Swedish metallers Grand Magus will release their new album, “Wolf God”, on April 19th via Nuclear Blast. The follow-up to 2016’s “Sword Songs”, it is the legendary band’s 9th studio album.
The cover artwork was created by acclaimed artist Anthony Roberts and the band had this to say about it:
“For the third time, the magic skill and imagination of Anthony Roberts has given birth to the cover artwork for a Grand Magus album. This time the forest, the moon and obviously the wolf take center stage. Not just any wolf though… beware his fury. This is the ‘Wolf God’!”
A grandiose opening, sounding like it belongs in Skyrim or the TV show Vikings, Gold and Glory suitably gets the blood pumping. It excites the mind, body and soul perfectly for the riff-tastic Wolf God to really get things going. Chunky as hell with vocals that often sound like the howling of a wolf, it’s a wicked opener capped off with a chest-thumping solo.
Keeping things hot, A Hall Clad in Gold has urgency about it, the bass and drums combining to get the heart beating that little bit faster. Then it’s back to being a powerhouse of riffs with Brother of the Storm and Dawn of Fire.
Grand Magus have really created an album that has the sound and feel of ancient battles, halls where mead is drunk and meat is feasted on. All while the wolf god howls outside in the cold. The wolves are hungry…
It might take a Spear Thrower to stop them taking a bite out of you. Useful considering the track has some weighty and fast-paced riffing.
To Live and Die in Solitude and Glory to the Brave follow that with punchy metal tracks built on the bones of those who have ever tried to match them with riffs. The former keeps the pace fast and exciting while the latter’s more methodical approach is as thick sounding as anything. The chorus of the latter is going to be live gold in regards to fan interaction. Especially as it speeds up for a wild head-banging solo.
He Sent Them All to Hel has a similar shout of the song title that is begging for a fist in the air, defiant return from a crowd of sweaty fans. Before Untamed goes for a no nonsense guitar attack, groove-pace and in your face hyper riffing, backed up by the double punch of the drums and vocals. It’s a really catchy track and the perfect closer.
Grand Magus aren’t necessarily pushing themselves here as it’s business as usual for the Swede metallers. However, that certainly isn’t a negative because Wolf God is so much fun. Many tracks here will be a worthy addition to the ‘best of’ Grand Magus’ catalogue.
Grand Magus – Wolf God Full Track Listing:
1. Gold and Glory
2. Wolf God
3. A Hall Clad in Gold
4. Brother of the Storm
5. Dawn of Fire
6. Spear Thrower
7. To Live and Die in Solitude
8. Glory to the Brave
9. He Sent Them All to Hel
The album will be available via all major streaming services on release but can be ordered now in a number of formats here.
Grand Magus - Wolf God (Nuclear Blast)
The Final Score - 8/10