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Northward – Northward | Album Review


From the ashes of Nightwish and Pagan’s Mind comes a niche new rise of bombastic and playful hard rock developed as new side project of Floor Jansen and Jorn Viggo Lofstad, under the name of Northward. This musical delivery leaves a sentimental taste on the lips and is heavily crammed with fierce energy to smash a swinging wrecking ball into the hardest concrete wall.

As many know, Scandinavia is the home ground of the most influential and ballsy true to the heart hard rock and heavy metal. From the offset this is evident from mind crushing opener ‘When Love Died’; released as the first single from this self-titled entry. Superiorly dressed in highly spirited crunching riffs and monumental hooks, this becomes a spectacular drive for the most passionate hard rock listener. Dynamically this track is gifted, and the emotions are magnificently transported through a journey to literally make love die.

The more attention given to this record, the more you will get out of it as there is so much diversified mastery and musicianship embedded inside the walls of this eleven-track outing to set the world on fire. Evidently, this can be witnessed from the Halestorm-esque ‘Get What You Give’ and the pop laden ‘Storm in a Glass’; which are both true indications that what Floor and Jorn have created from this project is pure excellence at the highest degree to provide the greatest heavy rock experience.

The fire and the fury of the Wolfmother flavoured ‘Drifting Islands’ is enough to cause a natural disaster with guitar distortions that provoke windows to shatter. The chorus exceedingly lifts the soul from the body and mind, which will keep even fans of the heaviest metal easily pleased.

Musical diversity is a continuity throughout the record and is apparent from the progressively minded ‘Paragon’ with shape shifting emotive patterns and captivating acoustic outlets that do the melodies complete justice. ‘Let Me Out’ comes as another surprise highlight too with a chorus to infect the world of any living species and will have you singing at the highest peaks right from the core of your lungs.

The prime unexpectancy comes at the latter of Northward’s debut; where the shift from the pompous distributed hard rock love affair fades into an acoustic ballad that eventually unexpectedly drifts into a thumping monster of an exotic masterpiece. These guys most definitely work tremendously well together, and this album truly is constructed greatly with purest form of hardened rock to the listener’s delight.

Accordingly, if you are expecting anything in the vain of Nightwish or Pagan’s Mind then this album is heaps and bounds away from that area of musicality. However, if your musical taste is immersed in impressive and bombastic hard rock; then this outing and project is truthfully going to win you over from the very beginning. Do not miss out this essential mass of melodious expertise.

Score: 9/10

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