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A Review of the Album "Armored Bards" by Austrian Folk Metal Band Heathen Foray

Updated on November 21, 2023
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Ara is a journalism graduate from California State University, Northridge, who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.


Heathen Foray Can Be Thought of as a Mixture of the Bands Ensiferum, Catamenia, and Helloween Combined

Heathen Foray from Austria might as well be the next band to represent the folk metal genre after Ensiferum. Their 2010 album called "Armored Bards" starts out being a mixture of folk and black metal in terms of the riffs. The title track called Armored Bards is a song about a group of brave, courageous warriors who have embarked on a journey so that their destiny can be fulfilled and that they can become immortal. Austria is a country that may make it onto the map slowly as a heavy metal nation or it may not. This Catamenia influenced song starts what is the beginning of what is to be a superb album even if the vocals aren’t easy to understand. The song also has that Helloween inspired riff. Does anyone remember the song called I Can?

"Armored Bards"

The Songs Ascension and Messenger of GOD

The song Ascension is a song about two men that are involved in a duel. At the end of this duel, the strongest person will survive. Messenger of GOD is a song about a person that rides bravely for days at a time even if he is covered in snow. His message is to free those people that have sinned and they do not know that they have sinned. That’s why Jesus came down to Earth. He came down to Earth not to preach about religion but to establish a relationship with all of us. The song does not address Jesus specifically but the message is pretty positive along with some intricate melodies. Or is it really a positive message? The other part of the song lyrically reveals that this individual is a false prophet trying to brainwash others to become just like him. Religion can be a very touchy subject but the band brings it up for thought.

"Messenger of GOD"

Austria is One of Several Colder Climate Countries With Awesome or Good Heavy Metal Bands

Looking at the big picture, there may be a correlation between countries with colder climates and awesome or good heavy metal bands. Some examples of this are countries such as Sweden, Germany, Norway, Denmark, and to a lesser extent Austria. I guess all that cold and snow might actually enhance the creativity of the population of those countries.

The Songs Endless Sorrow and A Brother's Tale

The next song called Endless Sorrow is about a person that is sitting alone in a room as the cold, wind, and rain is making its presence felt outside. Meanwhile, he has been dealing with the loss of the one that he loved. The vocals also sound like a little rougher version of the bands Noumena and Kalmah. A Brother’s Tale is a song about a person that was left on his own to prove his worth and to save the kingdom while reconquering the throne. The person is actually the brother of the king who was a despot. After a long, hard fought series of battles, this person was able to bring peace to the land. May peace please prevail around the world!

"Endless Sorrow"

The Album Armored Bards Gets a Perfect Score!

Where is the United States when it comes to folk metal? It is nonexistent. The US had its strong points as a nation in the heavy metal genre years ago only to be overtaken by other nations that have emerged from the early 2000’s to be stronger. Hopefully, heavy metal will start to thrive in this beautiful Central European nation of Austria! It is officially time to say that this album called Armored Bards is perfect and gets a 100 out of 100 points! The Song Carthage's End tells the tale of the strong Carthaginian general Hannibal. Generals throughout history have fought bravely even though some of them have lost. "Armored Bards" is one of the finest albums released in 2010 and it is one of the best albums in the career of Heathen Foray.

"Carthage's End"

© 2018 Ara Vahanian


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