Band Homeland: Norway
Band Homepage: http://www.kampfar.com/
Label Homepage: http://www.season-of-mist.com
Released in 1996 on Seasons Of Mist, this is a CD re-release of the impossibly unavailable promo cassette that was originally released in 1995.
Consisting of 3 tracks (2 original from the cassette and one bonus for the CD) with a total playing time of 18:40, “Kampfar” embodies all that I enjoy about Black Metal in one short CD. Even more amazing is the fact that the entirety of Kampfar consists of two men (Dolk and Thomas).
While “Kampfar” uses a known sound that is instantly recognized as a particular brand of Black Metal, it is not entirely straightforward. There is much use of classical acoustic instruments, rousing chanted choruses, and a limited bit of keys for effect. When the when the music is heavy and grim, it nearly epitomizes all that I like about Black Metal. Atmospheric depth subdued with echoed vocals, deep reverb grinding guitars, and hammering attacks on the drums.
Another thing that specifically captures me about this is that the entire album has a common theme of blackened Viking Metal throughout (and this is something that continues with their later releases). The lyrics are all in Norwegian, adding again to the mystique of this album.
One could say this CD is “only” three songs, but I’ll tell you now, these three songs but most full albums to shame.