Okay, so it’s April and it snowed here yesterday. Still, there’s something about this music that makes me long for wrapping myself up in a big cloak with a greatsword in my hand.
Or for writing about such things.
I believe I’ve mentioned Wardruna before (though I can’t find it in the archives); their music has been featured in the television show Vikings among other places. Due to a label change, you can find their music in two places on Bandcamp. The first two albums (including the track embedded below) are at https://warduna.bandcamp.com and the third album is at https://wardruna.bandcamp.com .
The second artist I want to mention is new to me, but damn do they fill a need I didn’t know I had. Heilung labels themselves as “amplified history” (as opposed to some kind of historical accuracy), but after experiencing it… well, I don’t care how accurate it is. It feels accurate. Take a look at the video below as well; there is such an amazing live performance (that you can see the entirety of on YouTube) that it’s well worth picking up the live album from Bandcamp as well.
A small note about this song in particular, as noted by RadianHelixMedia:
For those who are confused on the time frame of what this is representing, it’s not necessarily “Vikings,” and more or less not Neolithic. It’s Proto-Germanic she’s singing here, and in most of their music. It’s Pre-Migration Period, 600 years before the Vikings, ~1st Century CE til ~550 when Elder Futhark broke into Younger Futhark… Then they kinda do this English language “rap,” which is based on descriptions of Galdralag and Seiðalag — no surviving examples of which exist outside of very, very scant snippets in the Poetic and Prose Edda, and in descriptions by Saxo Grammaticus and possibly by Tacitus.
And that brings me to my final thought: I’m learning more and more of these kinds of revivals and fusions of primitive and folk music for the global north – but I’d love to be exposed to the analogous forms for other parts of the world. If you know of some and have favorites, let me know!