Moonsorrow is a pagan metal band formed in Helsinki, Finland, in 1995. Musically, the band incorporates elements of black metal and folk metal in their sound. The band call their sound "epic heathen metal" and try to distance themselves from the term "Viking metal".
The group's earliest formation consisted of cousins Ville Sorvali (vocals and bass) and Henri Sorvali (guitar and keyboards; also keyboards for Finntroll, Barathrum, and session member of Ensiferum) who released various demos that were much more characteristic of melodic black metal than future releases.
Their debut album, Suden uni, recorded in early 2000, was released in 2001, along with Tämä ikuinen talvi ("This Everlasting Winter"), a re-release of a 1999 demo. Suden uni ("A Wolf's Dream") combined Finnish paganism and folk elements. After recruiting Mitja Harvilahti and Markus Eurén, Moonsorrow started playing live, releasing Voimasta ja kunniasta ("Of Strength and Honour") in late 2001. However, the real takeoff for the band is generally held to be their 2003 release, Kivenkantaja ("Stonebearer"). In 2005 the band followed it up with their fourth full-length album, Verisäkeet ("Blood Verses"). The album was also their first to use ambient sounds such as birdsong and crackling fire in between tracks.
In January 2006 the band played their first US show at the Heathen Crusade Metalfest in Columbia Heights, MN. On March 7, 2006, Moonsorrow announced a 2-album contract with Spinefarm Records, and that their next album was slated for release in late 2006. On June 19 it was revealed that the upcoming album would feature guest vocals by Thomas Väänänen, the former vocalist of Thyrfing; Viides luku - Hävitetty ("Chapter five - Ravaged") was released in January 2007. The album contained only two tracks and displayed more overt influence from progressive rock.
An EP called Tulimyrsky was released in 2008. The EP is over one hour long and contains one new song (the title track), two remakes of old songs, and two cover songs. It was released worldwide by Spinefarm Records, and in May the German label Drakkar Entertainment released it in Germany, Austria and Switzerland.
In Fall 2010, Moonsorrow entered the studio to record their sixth full-length studio album, Varjoina kuljemme kuolleiden maassa ("As Shadows We Walk in the Land of the Dead"). The album was released on February 21, 2011 through Spinefarm Records.
In 2013 the band announced they had signed a contract with Century Media. October 2014 saw the release of a fourteen-LP box set entitled Heritage: 1995-2008 - The Collected Works, which proved to be a comprehensive career overview (excluding Varjoina kuljemme kuolleiden maassa) featuring twelve previously unreleased tracks and running for over eight hours.
2016 saw the release of the band's seventh full-length studio album, Jumalten aika.
1996 - Thorns of Ice (demo, only released via the Heritage box set; half of the recording was accidentally erased during mastering and no longer exists)
1997 - Metsä (demo; title translates as Forest)
1997 - Promo (demo, only released via the Heritage box set)
1999 - Tämä ikuinen talvi (demo; title translates as This Eternal Winter)
2001 - Suden uni (title translates as Wolf's Dream)
2001 - Voimasta ja kunniasta (title translates as Of Honour and Strength)
2003 - Kivenkantaja (title translates as Stone Bearer)
2005 - Verisäkeet (title translates as Blood Verses)
2007 - V: Hävitetty (also sometimes written as Viides luku - Hävitetty; title translates as Fifth Chapter - Ravaged))
2008 - Tulimyrsky (EP; title translates as Firestorm)
2011 - Varjoina kuljemme kuolleiden maassa (title translates as As Shadows We Walk in the Land of the Dead)
2014 - Heritage: 1995-2008 - The Collected Works (vinyl box set of all the band's recorded output prior to Varjoina...)
2014 - Demos & Rarities (part of Heritage collection, including six previously unreleased tracks)
2016 - Jumalten aika (title translates as Age of Gods) Read more on Last.fm. User-contributed text is available under the Creative Commons By-SA License; additional terms may apply.
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