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Thor: Christmas In Valhalla

Merry Thor-mas to the massed metal hordes! What d’ya mean it’s April and nearly Easter? Well, the promo pile was almost as mythical in size as Jon-Mikl Thor himself and not even my elven helpers pulled it to the top in time for the jolly bearded fool to shove some surprises down my smoking receptacle. Anyway, this is internet land so some loon is still bound to stumble across this in December two thousand and sometime so let’s all don our red hats with white furred trim and make like it’s time to turkey.

And that was exactly what Thor himself was doing with his first - and yes kiddie-winks he’d wanted to make one since three wise men came a camelling - Christmas album. Sounds ridiculous doesn’t it? Sure as the hammer smashes through the snow it is! Are you ready to “Donner & Blitzen” your way through the Christmas cheer? Well the sounds of the straining rock n’ roll gifted for your pleasure here is just about reindeered into submission, so someone is! Then we’re “Gonna Have A Rockin’ Christmas” (no, we really are….awwww come on, you’re no fun!) before we sway back and forth to the strains (and I do mean strains) of “It’s Christmas Time”, where singing in tune seems to be an optional extra that we didn’t upgrade to - did I get a gift receipt with this????

The CD highlight whooshes past on a “Slay Ride” where we’re almost in Goth n’Roll meets Motorhead territory, but not quite - but at least this one is genuinely good fun - before “Our Last Christmas” becomes the schmaltz you’d expect. The seven minute-plus (I know, the yuletide spirit is being stretched here) “Lend Me Your Ears” falls somewhere between heavy metal monster and B movie scaries, but at least it’s not playing it for the failed laughs that the “Not So Little Drummer Boy” is - a thin reedy voice and rattled lone snare suddenly smashed and mashed by flailing drum sticks and a tom solo that Neil Peart would, well, chuckle heartily at. Oddly, “If Tomorrow Never Comes” heads back into Goth n’ Roll chugga-thonicals, leaving “Cold Saint Nick” to close this confused collection out with an eerie message that threatens to unravel the very festive season this album is (ahem) celebrating.

If Christmas In Valhalla seems like a silly idea, honestly, you haven’t heard the half of it. Merry Thor-mas? All I can say is enjoy your Easter Eggs!

Track Listing
1. Donner & Blitzen
2. Gonna Have A Rockin’ Christmas
3.It’s Christmas Time Again
4. Slay Rider
5. Our Last Christmas
6. Lend Me Your Ears
7. Not So Little Drummer Boy
8. If Tomorrow Never Comes
9. Cold Saint Nick

Added: April 12th 2019
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Thor on bandcamp
Hits: 704
Language: english

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