The metal history of Sweden is vast and vaunted. Starting in the 1980’s, legendary Swedish stalwarts like Bathory, Candlemass, Grave, Dissection, Necrophobic, Entombed, and Meshuggah laid the groundwork and paved the way for their 90’s compatriots such as Dark Funeral, Watain, In Flames, Opeth, Dark Tranquility, Spawn of Possession, Marduk, Arch Enemy, and Bloodbath to spread their new translations of metal far and wide.
Then, in the 2000’s, even more diverse acts emerged from “Det avlånga landet” (“The Elongated Country”), such as Vildhjarta, Graveyard, Scar Symmetry, Enforcer, and the oft-maligned Ghost, exhibiting to the world that Sweden’s love for metal is not only unconditional, but also bursting at the seams with respect and admiration for its past, present, and future, in all of its glorious – and sometimes perplexing – forms.
And now, yet another fantastic act hailing from Sweden has arrived to put their own stamp upon the global metal community. Karlstad’s melodic stoner sludge four-piece Elden have been kicking around their local scene for the past seven years or so, independently recording and releasing both an EP and their debut full-length, Death and Fear, to strong reviews, and putting in the time and work to properly build their fanbase.
Following the natural progression, Elden were picked up by Fuzzorama Records (also based in Sweden), and began to toil away on their sophomore release. After years of hard work, Elden’s Nostromo is now ready to be unleashed upon an unsuspecting world, and the world best prepare thyself.
Heavily influenced by the proto-metal of the 60’s and 70’s – and its modern purveyors such as Baroness, The Sword, Graveyard, and Elder, among others – Elden have crafted a sound that is as classic as it is contemporary. Melodious, jampacked with riffs, sludgy as all hell, and comprehensively addictive, since first listening to Nostromo some weeks ago, this album has received almost daily spins here at the Hated One HQ. Easy to understand, learn, groove, headbang, and sing along to, Elden’s Nostromo is easily one of the most exceptional early albums of 2020, in any genre.
Right from the get-go, Elden blasts off the launching pad with the album’s first single, “Sail & Savour”, which is far-and-away the best track on an album that is already seething and foaming with great music to begin with. Other highlights of Nostromo include the rip-roaring and rollicking “Fossilised”, the swaying, swinging “Heavy Rain”, the rope-a-dope-like bait-and-switch dynamics of “Creature Follows”, and the epic, riff-laden closer, “Two-Faced Wizard”.
Elden’s Nostromo is some Grade-A-plus shit, people. Get this goodness in your ear holes, double-quick! ‘Nuff said. Stay metal, always!
Check out the official video for “Sail & Savour” by pressing play below, and don’t forget to visit the band on the web (links provided below the video) if you like what you’ve read and heard! \m/
Rating: 9.75 / 10
Release Date: January 24th, 2020 (Fuzzorama Records)
Influences and Contemporaries: Black Sabbath, Saint Vitus, Kyuss, Mastodon, The Sword, Baroness, Elder, Graveyard