Ash Of Ashes
13 May 2022
With the 2018 debut “Down The White Waters”, singer, guitarist and composer Skaldir attracted attention across genres. The triumphant EPIC SKALDIC METAL of ASH OF ASHES could even book several media top rankings worldwide.
The fact that the exceptional aesthete from Germany was so successful right from the start with his successor band to HEL, founded in 2014, was primarily due to the captivatingly artistic musicality of this unique album.
The necessary time, which the talented maestro left himself for the now appearing successor, fully benefits every single piece on “Traces” without exception.
Everything should be as accomplished as equally natural and organic – as the wonderfully picturesque artwork of the talented Norwegian Christopher Rakkestad clearly shows. A feast for tasteful eyes.
Singer Morten on the thematic content of “Into Eternity”:
“The song is about the narrator’s thoughts and memories when saying goodbye to a deceased friend. In addition, it echoes the question of what will remain of us in the future, after our passing.”
Musically, the gloriously radiant path of noble and illustrious epic moves forward, even if it is purposefully even more varied – especially in various tempos.
“Traces” delights all senses with such finely melodically arranged and highly catchy ‘Storyteller Metal’ that it is simply magnificent! Besides Skaldir and his well-tried comrade-in-arms Morten as lyricist and co-vocalist, live drummer Stryx and live guitarist Sethras can also be heard on the new masterpiece.
As a guest vocalist, the excellently integrated Lars Jensen of Myrkgrav joins the brilliant song “Into Eternity” with his fabulously distinctive voice for even more multiple sprawling goose bumps – Jensen sounds so exquisite, as if he was born only for this.
In the last track “To Those Long Forgotten” there are two guest singers due to the different roles in the song lyrics:
Mystik Folk spiritualist Rúnahild, who was already heard on the Hardanger fiddle on the debut album, sings the female vocal part, while cover artist Christopher Rakkestad (Elvarhøi) takes the male role. This metal ballad is about parents mourning their child killed in war. Emotionally delivered, this lyrical theme, though unplanned, has now become more relevant than ever.
Lyrically, the second album of ASH OF ASHES deals with the inevitably moving theme ‘journey’.
The lyrical topics on “Traces” range from the courageous departure up to the end – including the traces along with memory that ultimately remains in the traveler until the end of his days. Historical and mythological elements are interwoven in an exciting way, which guarantees timelessly entertaining stories. (Markus Eck)
Digital download available at: https://ashofashes.bandcamp.com
- Beyond White Waters (instrumental) 02:55
- Under the Midnight Sun 05:34
- Into Eternity (feat. Lars Jensen) 05:20
- The Eternal Traveller 04:41
- Evermore 04:35
- Vem kan segla förutan vind (trad., feat. Thomas Clifford) 02:17
- A Lion Guards Our Names 04:11
- Southbound 05:19
- To Those Long Forgotten (feat. Rúnahild & Christopher Rakkestad) 05:13
total: 40:26 min.
Skaldir • Vocals, Guitars, Keyboards, Bass
Morten • Lyrics, Vocals
Sethras • (Live)Guitars
Stryx • (Live)Drums
Ash Of Ashes – Into Eternity (feat. Lars Jensen)
Ash Of Ashes – The Queen’s Lament (The Lay of Wayland)
Ash Of Ashes – Flames on the Horizon (Acoustic live)
Ash of Ashes – Down The White Water