• 7/10
  • 6.5/10
    TARANIS - 6.5/10


Iron Age Records
Release date: April 15, 2008

User Review
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Two leaders, two bands / projects /, both try to play old school early 90’s Black Metal. Jorg Heinrich and Bjorn Desmet are running both their shows with ability but since their will went towards the old ways, why was the quality issue left behind? Presenting their latest joined effort, Ancient Will.


The Irish / Slovakian from Balyllean, Ireland, Jorg Heinrich began his project in 2007, handling all the instruments instead of the bass and small instruments. His style is old school Black Metal in the vein of the early raw Norwegian Black Metal scene with influences from bands like early Darkthrone, Emperor and Immortal. You can say he is doing it Falkenbach but without the Folk Metal musical elements, just the lyrical themes like Paganism and old Irish and Slovakian heritage. In Sep’ 2007 he released a demo named, Ein Reich , which featured the same songs that were collected for this split.

The production, handled by Heinrich, is, maybe intentionally, very poor sounding. There are some holes in it and the major ones are in the mastering section. There are instruments that receive too much volume in various sections and the result is the fading of other instruments. For example: the second track, “Forward To The Immortality” , although it starts out very good, the guitars almost totally overpowers the drums. And that is not the only track this sort of thing happens on. Even old and raw Black Metal acts such as Immortal in their 1992 album, Pure Holocaust, were able to avoid this sort of thing. Another small thing comes, again, in this same track. In its beginning there are these five annoying squeaks that sound like microphone trouble or too much gain.

As for Heinrich’s material, his writing is suitable for this sub-genre, both musically and lyrically. He tries to create various lead guitar riffs a’la old school Black Metal. Some of these riffs are very good and along with some lead bass lines they are the saviors of some tracks in his share of the release. But there are tracks that these riffs, pretty much, resemble each other just in a different scale. For example: “Poison In The Vein” and “My Journey To The Fantasy”. One of the good things that surround Heinrich’s release is the diverse bass lines that are mixed with some measure of melody.

Heinrich’s abilities to handle, almost all the roles of a band, are quite impressive. Overall he managed to succeed in his mission to make an old school release. His assistance came from the bass guitar section, handled by the Slovakian, Mathornor Mrtwosh, who is in charge of the melodies of the bass. The small instruments like bodhrans, whistles and pipes are handled by Heinrich’s wife Linda. Heinrich demonstrates some nice vocals abilities but these are very much the same as other Black Metal acts, even in today’s Black Metal scene.

Heinrich presents fine songs, but because of various similarities between them, some lose interest pretty quickly. The good ones will get their deserved credit. “Forward To Immortality” is a good track with a catchy, morbid melody a’la old school Black Metal. Also there are these cool lead bass lines. “Ancient Will” is an early 90’s Black Metal song, a very solid one with great vocals. “Teutonic Forest” is another impressive one, especially in the melody section, but it has some annoying parts near its end as well.


Bjorn Desmet is the main man behind Taranis. The band / project was formed, in West Flanders, Belgium, in 2005. Since its formation, Taranis released its first self-titled debut in 2007. Aside from the split with Heinrich they also will release their own 2008 release which goes by the name of Flandriae. The official release date is scheduled to be in December under the label Iron Pegasus. Taranis’s way is also old school Black Metal but mixed with very minor elements of Thrash Metal. Let’s say you can put them in the same room with Destroyer 666 and Bewitched.

Taranis’ chose, maybe also by intention, to go for a low quality production. He, like the former, succeeded in making the old sound of Black Metal a’la the early 90’s. He has the same trouble with mastering but there is another thing about his release. The drums, made by Fynnbrenn Ó Torcklàn, sound like they were programmed. Almost nothing in them sounds natural. The only positive thing about them is that they sound like old 80’s drums of Heavy Metal – let’s say more of a mid 80’s sound. This factor, really, has a negative effect on Taranis’ share of the release. As for the mastering issue, the guitars are way too behind and the vocals are stronger than everything here.

Delivering words about Paganism, pride and honor, Taranis’ material is presented as a solid piece. Regarding the music, it’s very simple with fewer complexities. The riffs are repeating themselves – almost every song has its own main and only riffs. This element can bore some listeners. In addition, there are a few minor solos like in “Possessed” and “Feeding The Ravens”. The solos are also very simple. It is expected from one that mixes Thrash Metal, regardless of any other sub-genre, to be much more aggressive in the solo sections. As for the lyrics, they are also well expected. Taranis are continuing with the same themes that served them since their arrival.

Bjorn, as a vocalist, is like any other Black Metal vocalist, but sounds more like Abbath of Immortal with high pitched and crunchy growls. As a guitarist he is doing pretty much routine stuff, playing well expected simple riffs. As a bassist, it’s hard to tell because the bass line is very thin. If Torcklàn is actually drumming he has some impressive moments out there.

Taranis’ share of the tracks, in this release, are okay-minus. He has trouble making them interesting. Some of them start to get boring in their middle. But there are songs that have some potential like: “Feeding The Ravens” which is the best track in this release that comes along with an attacking force, cool simple solo section and driving chorus. Alongside this one, arrives the track “Possessed” which goes in the same line. The closer, “Tenebrae Et Noctus”, closes the album with some finesse.


Both Black Metal artists tried their best to sound like the old Black Metal scene. For what can be noticed from their joint release, they made it through. The only problems that occurred were in the sound area. These things can be resolved pretty fast. Their way to glory is carved; they just have to follow it. Cheers mates!!


  • Lior Stein

    Lior was a reviewer, DJ and host for our Thrash Metal segment called Terror Zone, based out of Haifa, Israel. He attributes his love of Metal to his father, who got him into bands like Deep Purple, Rainbow, Boston, and Queen. When he was in junior high he got his first Iron Maiden CD, The Number Of The Beast. That's how he started his own collection of albums. Also, he's the guitarist, vocalist and founder of the Thrash Metal band Switchblade. Most of his musical influences come from Metal Church, Vicious Rumors, Overkill, and Annihilator.

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