Monday, August 13, 2012

Metal Mondays: Arafel

Told you this week would be a different genre. We're getting our folk on now.
They're in a forest and everything. So folky.

Genre: Folk Black Metal
Country: Israel

Coming to us all the way from the Mediterranean is Arafel. A quick search gives us this: "Arafel, a Hebrew word (ערפל), meaning "fog;" generally used in reference to the Apocalypse." which sounds pretty metal. And pretty Israeli. Actually, being a successful metal band, or a metal band at all, in Israel is pretty hard. Bands such as Melechesh have changed countries because of troubles with the infamous religion police.

This band actually caught my attention when it was announced that former Equilibrium vocalist Helge Stang would be joining. I've always had a soft spot for Asian bands in general because they never seem to get any recognition, so I thought I'd check Arafel out. Needless to say, I was impressed. Their latest album, For Battles Once Fought, contains all the folk you'd need mixed with catchy melodic black metal riffs. Combined with Helge's powerful screaming and growling vocals, it leaves quite a mark. Also they have a female violinist, Nasha Nokturna (that can't be her real last name), which is always a nice bonus.

This is all that comes up when you Google the band name.
Most of Arafel's songs are a bit long, breaking the 5 minute mark. They usually go by quite fast though due to the speedy guitars and great interludes. Death of Archaic World is one of the more unique songs on the disc, starting off with an electronic-ish intro and having a banjo solo. A banjo solo! The only other band I've heard do a banjo solo is Ensiferum in Stone Cold Metal. This one is just as good though, and the song is better. Then it transitions into a violin solo, bridge, and back into the song. Yes, this is my favourite song on the album. Check it out:

-Zombie Viking


  1. Not folky enough for me, first half is great, but after 3 minutes it left the general idea of the song and focused to much on solos and other parts. Well, maybe I'm just bitching because I tasted a lot finer Finnish/Norwegian Folk Metal.. But no, Skalmold from Iceland was able to hit my ears hard with its Kvapning.. Well, all up to private taste I suppose ^^

    1. I like the fact that they're a touch folky. I do listen to some very folky bands, but sometimes I just want to hear heavy riffs.

      Also man you should click "join this site" on the right. It'll keep you updated :)

  2. There are also Finntroll and Trollfest using banjo.

    But anyway this is not banjo, but balalaika, which really fits thought, that this band originally comes from Soviet Russia from what i heard.

    1. Oh man, it sounded like a banjo to me. That's pretty cool though, thanks for the info!