Amon Amarth – Under the Influence
So was I browsing the Amon Amarth records on my iPod and I realized I have an EP I forgot about, so babble about that for a second. As I was getting ready to post this, I realized I don’t actually own the physical CD for this release, which means it should be disqualified from this series. But I already wrote and edited it, so here it is.)
Of course, I don’t have a thing to say about it. I’m not sure if I ever listened to this record before. It came as a bonus disc with Deceiver of the Gods. So far the first song doesn’t sound very familiar. Not sure what I think about it. The music seems alright, but the vocals are a bit weak.
I feel that needs qualifying. After listening to these guys for the last few days I have started to noticed something about them I have never noticed before, and that is the vocalist’s voice is rather cartoonish. Well, I have known that all along, I used to describe these guys as if DethKlok were a real band, they’d be Amon Amarth. So the fact that dudes voice sound like a cartoon character isn’t new to me. But he seems to be a one trick pony. He uses the same voice in almost every song. I’ve heard people say Chris Barnes (Cannibal Corpse and Six Feet Under) sounded like the Cookie Monster, but Johan, or whatever his name is, does sound like the Cookie Monster.
So, I have no idea what song I’m listening to now is, (‘Satan Rising’) but it doesn’t sound like Amon Amarth at all. It has a real Sabbathy sound to it, and whoever is singing is trying to be ‘Master of Reality’ era Ozzy.
The next song, (Snake Eye’s) sort of has the stoner metal vibe to it but is a lot closer to their sound than the last song, but the lyrics seem to be closer to a Motorhead song. Now if I guess I’d be willing to bet this is a Motorhead song. It just sounds like one. Of course I never liked that band so I can’t say without looking it up. But it seems to be all about gambling, which seemed to be a favorite theme for Lemmy. (A theme I find lame, but that’s a different story.)
The next tune, (Stand Up Go Down) has a very Amon Amarth-ish opening but suddenly starts to sound like a Scorpions song. I just looked it up again and there is no information on this CD. It sounds like a bunch of cover songs, but I can’t find any info on it. Maybe for the hell of it, they decided to write a bunch of odd non-Viking and Norse Mythology songs. Since they didn’t fit thematically or musically within your average Amon Amarth record they decided to include them as a bonus disc. I seriously don’t know.
I just know that this will be my last Amon Amarth review for a while. I can’t figure out convenient a way to listen to the DVD. Though it’s been fun revisiting these few CD’s I have owned for years but haven’t spent much time with, I must admit I only need one record from these guys, ‘Twilight of the Thunder God’. I tried looking up getting it on vinyl the other day, but it’s unavailable. I could just buy the CD and call it a day. But I’m seriously considering selling off my entire CD collection some time here, so I’m not sure if I want to add to it just yet. I’d rather just own it on vinyl. We’ll see. I’ll figure it out.
So to conclude with Amon Amarth, if somehow what I wrote the last few posts intrigues you, and you’re interested in checking them out, my suggestion should be rather obvious: start with ‘Twilight of the Thunder God’. Go on Spotify or YouTube and check out the title song, if you dig that, then you’ll probably dig just about everything else they’ve done. Despite what I’ve said here, their catalog is pretty solid from the first album up to Twilight…’. Their newest record is a bit weird for me, but I haven’t spent much time with it.
Anyway, I’m out. I need to write my own Viking music and continue with this stupid challenge I set up for myself every year.