Monday, September 5, 2016

September 5th, 2016 - A Triple For Double Decades

Hyvää iltaa!  The Meista here getting heavy, big, and bold with one more for you tonight (against my better judgement)... a compilation album "Two Decades Of Greatest Sword Hits" by Finnish folk metal band Ensiferum and a Talisman Presents Limited Release Beer: Triple India Pale Ale from Talisman Brewing Company!  Hells yeah!!

Album Info:
  • Artist: Ensiferum
  • Title: "Two Decades Of Greatest Sword Hits"
  • Recorded: 1997 through 2015
  • Release date: 2016 (1st greatest hits album from Ensiferum) (1969-04-16)
  • Record company: Spinefarm Records
  • Production: Ensiferum, Hiili Hiilesmaa, Janne Joutsenniemi, Tero Kinnunen, and Flemming Rasmussen
  • Album cover art: RITUAL
  • Personnel: Meiju Enho (keyboards), Oliver Fokin (drums), Sami Hinkka (bass guitar and backing vocals), Jari Mäenpää (vocals and guitars), Petri Lindroos (vocals and guitars), Jukka-Pekka Miettinen (bass guitar), Kimmo Miettinen (drums), Janne Parviainen (drums), Sauli Savolainen (bass guitar), Emmi Silvennoinen (keyboards, piano, Hammond organ, and vocals), Netta Skog (electric accordion and backing vocals), and Markus Toivonen (vocals and guitar)
  • Additional musicians: a massive list of guest and session musicians (too many to name!)
  • Musical style: Folk metal, Viking metal, melodic death metal, power metal, with a touch of symphonic metal
  • Sound: As with all of their albums, the sound on Ensiferum's greatest hits album, "Two Decades Of Greatest Sword Hits" is (in a word) EPIC!  This is bombastic, melodic, powerful stuff that lends itself so well to drinking!  And serious drinking at that!  You want to grab all your buddies and start a drunken sing-along around a funeral pyre amongst your raiding spoils!  It is incredibly fun, yet also very complex, wonderfully written, and perfectly executed!
  • Major themes: With songs exploring Viking history, mythology, and lore, the themes include heroism, swordplay, war, battles, victory, defeat, drinking, magic, lust, gods, deception, treachery, revenge, power, etc.
  • Tracks:   
  1. "By The Dividing Stream"
  2. "From Afar"
  3. "Heathen Horde"
  4. "One More Magic Potion"
  5. "In My Sword I Trust"
  6. "Token Of Time"
  7. "Dragonheads"
  8. "Twilight Tavern"
  9. "Burning Leaves"
  10. "Treacherous Gods"
  11. "Lai Lai Hei"
  12. "Two Of Spades"
  13. "Iron"
  14. "Victory Song"

Brew Info:
  • Brewery: Talisman Brewing Company (Ogden, Utah)
  • Website:   
  • Brew: Talisman Presents Limited Release Beer: Triple India Pale Ale
  • Style: Triple India Pale Ale (TIPA)
  • Serving: 22 ounce bottle
  • ABV: 11.3% (POW!)
  • Pour: The Talisman TIPA pours a slightly hazy deep copper with a frothy and creamy, off-white head that dissipates slowly to a half-moon ring with intricate spider web lacing.
  • Nose: The nose is herbal, sweet, bitter, and vegetal.  There are notes of black tea, bitter root, pine resin, soft caramel, freshly baked wheat bread, fresh squeezed orange juice, lemon zest, fresh squash, and a hint of booze.
  • Taste: The taste of the Talisman TIPA is an aggressive complexity.  There are big notes of bitter black tea, sweet caramel, and a hint of booziness (that becomes a bit more prominent as the beer warms).
  • Mouthfeel: Medium to full-bodied with lower carbonation, the mouthfeel is paradoxically both smooth and astringent... with also sticky and somewhat oily character along with a lingering bitter finish.

Overall pairing: 
The latest (and limited release) brew from the good folks at Talisman Brewing Company is a big, bold, ass-kicking triple IPA... perfect for the bold aggression of Ensiferum's style of Viking/folk metal!  The big bitter notes are great for that Scandinavian existential view of the world, while the sweeter character lends itself well to the melodic harmonies.  And that 11.3% ABV?  Well, that's Viking as shit!!  :)

Maljanne!!  Kippis terveydeksi!!  Hails!!

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