As the Path Unfolds
Style: Epic Folk Metal
Release date: March 2nd 2009

Back in 2007 Jakke Vitala self-produced a 3-track demo just for fun, but he soon realised that the material was good enough for a bigger audience. He searched for members able to bring his tales to life with both beauty and power. Mikko Häkkinen joined for the aggressive vocal parts and Helena Haaparanta for the clean vocals. After writing some songs they entered the Adamantium Studios together with session members Henri Sorvali (Moonsorrow, Finntrol) on bass and Janne Jukarainen (Hanging Garden) on drums.

The orchestral opening immediately reveals influences of Howard Shore (Lord of the Rings); the music sounds like a movie soundtrack. The songs we get served after that are a mixture of Nightwish, Turisas, In the Woods and Finntrol. The aggressive and clean vocals vary each other throughout the songs. The massive bombastic orchestral sample parts are combined with heavy guitars, violin, accordion, cello and harmonica - in several songs there are folk influences. Fortunately the music never gets too wimpy, the aggressive (almost black metal) screams of Mikko and the tempo in some of the songs see to that.

In the song "Aubade" the dramatic vocals of Helena is accompanied by acoustic guitar and piano, which makes tears run down your cheeks; what a voice that woman has. Jakke has the ability to write good composed songs and I must be very mistaken if this music won't find its way out to the folk metal fans around our globe. Isn't there anything to pick on then? Well, perhaps they could have put the guitar parts just a little more in front of the mix, but I must not carp at everything (put salt on every snail) now.

I also wonder if and how they will bring their music live, but perhaps that is not their purpose. Fans of this genre know what to do.

01. Neothera Awakening
02. The Crown of Treason
03. Wildfire Season
04. Where Waning Winds Lead
05. Sun Orphaned

Ascension Pyre

07. Shadow Hearth
08. Non Serviam
09. Aubade
10. Hundred Shores Distant
11. Novembre
Label: Napalm Records
Provided by:   Napalm Records
Distribution: Target (Denmark)
Reviewed by: Reinier de Vries
Date: February 19th 2009