We are passing through
Through the dark
To the bridge of Khazad-Dum
Those who know our blog know that we regularly look to Serbia. This is not primarily because you can spend a wonderful time with all kinds of culinary delights in Novi Sad, for example, but because of Claymorean. But Serbia has even more to offer besides our friends in the metal field. And at this point it’s time to raise the curtain for Oathbringer and their debut album Tales of Glory.
Already with the atmospheric intro “Arrival“, the four guys from Kragujevac qualify for the Epic Metal Blog. After that it goes on remarkably diversified, so that the following 36 minutes fly by. “Odin’s Call“ offers us powerful, epic-fighting heavy metal that invites us to go into battle. A plus point are the quite variable, vigorous vocals, which ennoble a chorus that reminds us not least of Manowar. The following “Hail to the King“ impresses with its tempo changes – thanks to the thrashy note, this is undoubtedly a good grooving live hit. “Stand or Fall“ also goes on the offensive – a fistraising chorus and great guitar work exude the 80s glory that also characterises “Alone in the Night“. A special number is “The Ring“. You already guessed that we are moving into Tolkien territory on the lyrical level – those who know me know that I can always get excited about that. All in all, this tranquil, acoustic song is inevitably reminiscent of Blind Guardian’s “The Lord of the Rings“. It’s obvious that it doesn’t reach the class of this godsend, but we’re still dealing with an amazing track that shows Oathbringer from a different side. Considering that Tales of Glory is the first official release in the band’s history, this is of course not unimportant.
But the four Serbians have not yet presented the absolute highlights. “Shayol Ghul“ is set in the fantasy realm of Robert Jordan. Here, electric guitars and hard riffing dominate again, which is a feast for every headbanger. Especially well-done are the numerous tempo and mood changes, which make the song really interesting – sometimes it sounds symphonic, sometimes folky, but usually enormously heavy. All these elements are mixed together so well that the result is an extremely tasty mixture. “Moria“ is again dedicated to Tolkien and the nine companions. This track is a punchy epic heavy metal anthem that encourages us like Gimli to send a horde of orcs to the eternal hunting grounds with our mighty axe. The finale with piano sounds ends the actual album in style. However, there is a bonus track on Tales of Glory called “Under the Spell“. This hard, sweaty number is less varied than the two previous highlights, but it is so much fun that you immediately want to press the repeat button (even if the fade-out is less convincing, but that’s a matter of taste…).
Conclusion: Tales of Glory excels with a very good sound, a great performance of all musicians and consistently good, partly excellent songwriting. It is an energetic record that reminds me in some places of Greek bands like Achelous – undoubtedly a sign of quality. So you definitely have to keep an eye on Oathbringer – I’m sure that the Serbians can even step it up a notch on the second album. But here, too, there is already a clear buy recommendation for all fans of classic, sometimes heavier metal sounds. It is to be hoped that western music journalists will not – once again – be so narrow-minded and neglect this terrific record from a country that has not been a metal hotspot up to now.