Album Review – Blodtår / Det Förtegna Förflutna (2023)

This Swedish Folk and Black Metal entity will take you on a thrilling voyage in its first full-length album, telling stories inspired by Scandinavian folklore, forests, mountains and mythological beings.

A Folk and Black Metal fusion of the lo-fi malice of Embassy-era Gorgoroth, the folkish grandeur of Windir, and Dissection’s icy, melancholic melodies, the stunning Det Förtegna Förflutna, or “the secretive and quiet past” translated from Swedish, is the debut full-length opus by Stockholm, Sweden-based Black Metal entity Blodtår (“blood tears” or “tears of blood”), the follow-up to the band’s 2021 self-titled debut EP. Recorded and mixed at Wing Studios, Det Förtegna Förflutna showcases masterful riffing heavily inspired by Swedish folk melodies, played lightning-fast but without sounding upbeat, by the project’s mastermind, vocalist, guitarist and bassist Carl, supported by Hebert Alarcón Cerna on drums. “The album title expresses my wish to shine some light on a cultural heritage we in Scandinavia still have but appear to be neglecting more and more. Det Förtegna Förflutna consists of songs that are somewhat linked together by themes such as northern folklore, forests, mountains, and mythological beings. Each composition tells a different story, akin to old Scandinavian fairy tales (which were often illustrated by artists like John Bauer),” commented Carl about his awesome new album.

The project’s Folk Metal vein arises in full force in En krona av is (“a crown of ice”), blending the magic of the genre with the obscurity of Scandinavian Black Metal while Carl roars from the bottom of his blackened heart supported by the classy beats by Hebert; and the duo’s fusion of harsh and folky sounds goes on in Ur mörker (“of darkness”), showcasing an amazing job done by Carl with his strident, caustic riffage and low-tuned bass lines, sounding very melodic and grim and, consequently, living up to the legacy of the genre. In Skymning (“dusk”) we face three intense minutes of modern-day Melodic Black Metal made in Sweden with the blast beats by Hebert adding an extra touch of violence and heaviness to the overall result, followed by Den fördärvande sorgbundenheten (“the devastating grief”), a pulverizing and majestic aria of Black Metal where Carl is on fire armed with his stringed axes and deep, infernal roars.

The guitar-driven interlude De dansar på berget… (“they dance on the mountain…”) will set the stage for the duo to kill again in I avgrundens djup (“in the depths of the abyss”), offering more of their furious yet extremely harmonious sounds, with Hebert sounding possessed behind his drums while the music feels imposing until the very last second. It’s then time for another intermission, Gånglåt (“walking tune”), this time slightly longer in duration and more melancholic, and once again led by Carl’s melodic guitar lines, followed by Uttala dess namn (“speak its name”), a headbanging feast of Folk and Black Metal tailored for lovers of the genre where Hebert hammers his drums in great fashion nonstop, with the song’s breaks and variations bringing a fresher vibe and taste to it. Lastly, an epic, galloping pace spearheaded by Hebert will put you to bang your head to the sound of En brynja av barr (“a hauberk of pine needles”) while Carl extracts pure metal from his rumbling bass, flowing flawlessly until the end and putting a climatic finale to the album.

Carl and his incendiary Blodtår are waiting for you on Facebook and on Instagram with news, plans for the future and so on, and don’t forget to also go to Spotify to stream all of the project’s amazing creations. Furthermore, if you want to show Blodtår your utmost support, you can purchase a copy of Det Förtegna Förflutna from the band’s own BandCamp page, or simply by clicking HERE. Det Förtegna Förflutna beautifully combines the intricate and unique stories from the Scandinavian culture with the visceral sounds from Black Metal and the magic of Folk Metal, and may Carl and his Blodtår continue to tell such stylish tales through their music for years and years.

Best moments of the album: Ur mörker, Den fördärvande sorgbundenheten and En brynja av barr.

Worst moments of the album: None.

Released in 2023 Nordvis Produktion

Track listing
1. En krona av is 6:01
2. Ur mörker 5:16
3. Skymning 3:13
4. Den fördärvande sorgbundenheten 7:10
5. De dansar på berget… 0:39
6. I avgrundens djup 4:26
7. Gånglåt 1:30
8. Uttala dess namn 5:47
9. En brynja av barr 7:25

Band members
Carl – vocals, guitars, bass
Hebert Alarcón Cerna – drums


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.