Heidevolk – Batavi

Heidevolk, which translates to “people of the moorland” in English, is a Dutch folk/Viking metal band. “Batavi” is their fourth album and is sung entirely in their native Dutch. I’ve no idea what they are saying, but regardless this album sounds really good. If it were in English I think this would be a pretty huge album, but being in Dutch kind of limits the appeal outside of the Netherlands.

Everything about the production is very bright and clean. The music ranges from slow heavy to fast heavy and the vocals are pretty clean and tend to have a very folk-style chant cadence. The vocals are deep and almost have a clean David Gold Woods of Ypres sound at times. Group chanting is also very prevalent.

I can’t be sure what they are singing about on these songs (I’ve read that in general they sing about nature, mythology and folklore) but a lot of this music makes me want to march off to some kind of battle. That may be completely counter to what they are going for, but that’s what this style of music brings to my mind.

I’m really pretty blown away by how good this album sounds. I don’t want to keep harping on the language thing, but if this was in a tongue native to me I would probably listen to this album constantly. Despite this barrier, I have to say this is a very enjoyable listen. I can get into classical music sung in other languages, so I can get into this too. Pour a horn full of mead and bang your head to “Batavi.”