Various Artists
Ragnarok Juletide
(Spinefarm Records)

If you’re a fan of Christmas music, this is an album you HAVE to check out! This Finnish “supergroup” of heavy metal band members (from Nightwish, Sonata Arctica, Ahola, Harmaja, etc.) has put together an incredible yuletide sonic adventure!! Along the lines of Trans-Siberian Orchestra, Ragnarok Juletide consists of Christmas carols… symphonic heavy metal style. Dude, this thing ROCKS! Ragnarok Yuletide incorporates the awesome aspects of heavy metal into each and every Christmas tune. Staccato, precise drumming, scorching guitars and vocals with that metal edge… right under the surface come together so spectacularly to form this incredible collection. The tracks range from the well-known like “The First Noel,” “Little Drummer Boy,” “White Christmas” and “Ave Maria” to the lesser known “Sylvia’s Song,” “Here On the Hay,” and “Christmas Has Come.” Each song has a uniquely metal appeal, but is presented to maintain the reverence of the season.

Apparently, this project has been a huge success in Finland for many years now…called Raskasta Joulua (Heavy Christmas). I can totally see why – this is seriously a beautifully assembled musical experience. While the project has been successful in Finland previously, this is the first time the music has been recorded in English and brought to the US; a wonderful gift to metal fans here. You guys should seriously get your Christmas on, and check out Ragnarok Juletide. You’ll be festively metal… or metally festive in no time. Merry Christmas, everyone! (Jen Canipe)

Purchase Ragnarok Juletide here.

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