Oakenshield (U.K.): Legacy (Einheit Produktionen)
Oakenshield is violin folk melodies at front, surrounded by folk metal. Also, the violin is often accompanied or takes turns with another folk instrument, could be a flute or something like that, I do not know. At any rate, “Earl Thorfinn” is a prime example of the violin folk spirit, for its memorability. Then again, “Jorvik” has a little bit more a symphonic quality to it, and it’s also a good song. “Clontarf” is a groovy little ditty of violin folk metal growling and clean singing.
The music is always midpaced and a bit on the slow side, so that speed is not found here. The not-too-fast, not-too-slow approach gives the violin and flute a major role, and puts it at the center the songs.
The folk metal elements are the foundation: the (programmed?) drums and the guitar chug along. There are clean and growled vocals, both work well with the music, which also has a less-pronounced symphonic feel at times.
However, Oakenshield wastes very little time in getting to the melodies, which are a tremendously crucial element here. The sing-along objective of Oakenshield is achieved very well.
In some ways, this is very typical European folk metal, but if you like those melodies, you’ll enjoy this one-man band Ben Corkhill re-arrangements of traditional melodies.
Should be fun for the Viking/folk enthusiasts, as long as people understand that this is a studio thing, since it is a one-man entity. It takes a long time and a lot of dedication to put together an album like this.
By the way, I have no knowledge if that “flute” is played by a human being or programmed, given that such information is not really explained at the band’s website. Does that mean that it is a computer program? Could be. Otherwise, why not list the instruments played? www.oakenshield.org