Sworn to Vengeance

01. Kinsmen
02. Sworn to Vengeance
03. Where Darkness Dwells

Morten Bryld – Vocals
Martin W. Jensen – Guitars Carlos
G.R. – Guitars
Danny Svendsen – Keyboards
Morten Kristiansen – Bass
Mikkel Køster – Drums


Søren Jensen - session drums

Mixed & Mastered by Søren Jensen Six at String Studios, Fredrikshavn, Denmark

Released 2012-10
Reviewed 2013-04-03


This band now sworn to vengeance was formed in 2006, the place was Copenhagen in Denmark and it was a dark winter according to the tale. They are said to be folk-/viking-/pagan- or something like that metal, a genre that seems to be expanding rapidly at the moment. In some cases a bit spiralling out of control with the telltale sig of boring similitude as a result as more and more band come in, it becomes more and more difficult to find any you like. Can Heidra be one? Well, of course they can, they have two demos behind them and the quintet is now complete which can be exciting, they have even done a music video that can be seen in this review. So what about their first real release then?

It is an EP, and it is called Sworn to Vengeance. The cover artwork looks ordinary and it has only three songs and a playing time of just over 18 minutes, meaning long tracks but short in playing time and short on tracks. The quality in production is definitely there, it sounds powerful and strong, well made I think you could say. There is a bit of variation over the songs which feels composed from a power metal foundation with a bit of symphonic undertones and growly vocals in a croaking style most melodic extreme metal bands use these days. There is nothing groundbreaking about this quintet that’s for certain, they do however do what they do well and it feels quality made this EP which is always good.

They set out to compose material that was not so common in Danish music and so they did as I am not so sure that I have heard many similar Danish bands. This would be all good if it stopped there and no music from foreign bands were imported to Denmark and they were only trying out their home market but in music that is never the case which my receiving the album points towards. I think they do stand up well in the competition and I would say that they belong in the upper half of the bands in the genre, the problem is that this EP is really too short to really tell how far up that ladder they are. But it is a good promise and after all it is a self released thing so they might be a bit budget constrained or something which is why they opted for an EP rather than an album but to really do their music justice they should look down the album route as this music works best as a whole rather than three solitary tracks. Maybe it is a teaser for what is to come in terms of an album? No info about that in the press info though.

I think that the opening track Kinsmen sets a good tone for the EP as it is a strong track with good character and feel, the other two tracks follow suit rather well. Thing is though (if I am to be negative for a second) that the EP is too short to really get into, more tracks in the same amount of time could have worked but more songs is a must. It is not varied enough to really take off either and that is mostly down to the vocals being mostly in a rather narrowly styled type of growling with only small variation and hardly no clear vocals which this music would clearly benefit from. Still, it is a promising EP and one that is quite nice to listen to as well, I like it but I’d much rather see an album than keep playing these three tracks much longer.

It is more or less as EPs are most, short and feels more like a teaser for something else rather than something you are to listen to a lot. I am not a fan of the EP-format and this cannot change that fact, but if you like very melodic extreme metal I am sure that you will find Heidra a band to like.



Label: Independent/Zineaholic PR
Three similar bands: Wolfchant/Eluveitie/Cruachan
Rating: HHHHHHH (4/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

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