Metal To Infinity

‘The Journey to Helheim and the land of the Dead’ is a brief translation of Helfahrt from Germany.  Once, this was a one-man project of Max Marquardt (vocals), who might be known as former bassplayer in the band Sycronomica. Through the years, the project evolved into a real band, that consists of 5 members. Markus Klüpfel and Sebastian Ludwig became guitarplayers, his brother Tobias took care of the bass, and Andreas Mecker had a seat behind the drum kit.  All together, they focused on writing songs with a huge Black Metal approach but with the addition  of grooving rock, as well as atmosphere and melancholy.  Not an easy task, but they did it with much dedication and craftsmanship, so we can conclude that the Helfahrt Black’n Roll is done with a good vision on how this kind of music should sound.  The songs have a huge variety and are constantly adding new elements like acoustic intermezzos, flute, harmonica, organ (“Der Zeit entstellt’) and spoken word (‘Auf Dem Strome’).  All these parts and elements combined result in a decent, well done album with a lot of black metal approach, but also a Nordic feeling, like we listen to Immortal with German lyrics…  

Some of the songs have such a great rhythm and arrangement, it’s like an ice cold wind that shivers my body.  For those that might be afraid about the German lyrics, well, there is no need to, as they add something to the songs. It gives a great extra, and only few bands can say that the Germany lyrics are a bonus. Helfahrt is one of them, amongst the likes of Equilibrium. .. .. 

An open and well done production is a necessity for a band like Helfahrt, as they add so many components that the sound would be killer if they mess up.  Luckily, the band paid a lot of attention to this matter, so it is a real pleasure to dig into this disc!  I am going to track down previous albums of this band, as my hunger isn’t fed so far. ‘Sturmgewalt’ was released in 2006, and ‘Wiedergang’ was unleashed in 2008.  This third album is probably their best to date, but to exclude no misunderstandings, I will see if those first two albums are still available.  So far, I have my pleasure with “Drifa”, created by five ambitious musicians from Munich… 

My rating: 90 / 100 (Review by Patrick De Sloover)