Sound — 8
The album opens with a standard Bathory intro track, but then jumps into an all in Viking metal song, "Blood on Ice". The sound is fairly heavy but it is not that heavy compared to some Viking metal of today. However, it comes with all the double-bass and choir you would expect. The album tells the story of a ten year old, forced to live in a forest for 15 years, before meeting Oden and becoming a warrior. The album also has some themes of Bathory's black metal roots, as well as new elements. "Gods of Thunder of Wind and of Rain" is one of my favourite tracks off the album, the catchy chorus is a refreshing sound for Bathory, and the story behind fits well with the music. Some other songs, like "The Stallion" have riffs that you feel like you've heard before, even if you haven't.
Lyrics — 7
Been a concept album, the lyrics are a vital part to the overall theme. The lyrics which I have read are well written and original, and fit in well with the guitar work. The vocals aren't anything special, and are very different from the old Bathory. However, they still tie nicely in with the Viking metal theme and music.
Overall Impression — 8
Compared to Viking metal of today, it is a refreshing change, even if it isn't heavy. It's good to listen to the bands that pioneered the genre. "Gods of Thunder of Wind and of Rain" is great track, but it's probably better just to listen to the album and see what you think. Overall, it is a well written album, the guitar and drums compromise with each other and the vocals and choirs bring out the Viking metal style. The bass is hard to hear on the album, but it doesn't really matter for this style. All in all, I would recommend this album, but it might not be as heavy as you are expecting.