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TYR

Progressive Metal • Faroe Islands


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Tyr biography
The Faroe Islands can hardly be said to be a place many know much about, but as far as music goes they have produced at least one major export article - TYR.

Founded in 1998 by Heri Joensen (vocals, guitar), Gunnar H. Thomsen (bass), Kári Streymoy (drums), Pól Arni Holm (vocals) and Jón Joensen (guitar, vocals) it took them 2 years to come up with their first production; the four-track Tyr Demo.

Shortly after Jon Joensen left the band, but the remaining quartet toiled on, and in 2002 How far To Asgaard was issued, their official full length debut album.

Following the release a number of line-up changes occured, as Holm said his goodbyes to Tyr while Allan Streymoy (vocals) and Terji Skibenæs (guitars) joined. This new 5 member strong line-up soon released new material, with the single Olavur Riddararos issued in October 2002.

This new line-up didn't stay stable for long though, as Streymoy left Tyr soon after. The remaining quartet stayed though, and in June 2003 Eric The Red was issued.

This second venture by Tyr sold really well; which eventually saw to it that Napalm Records got interested and signed the band; and in 2006 a slightly expanded version of Eric The Red was released worldwide.

With a stable line-up in place and signed to a renowned record label, Tyr has had a steady output following this. In September 2006 Ragnarok was released, followed by Land in 2008, a re-issue of their debut album How far To Aasgaard followed next and By The Light Of The Northern Star came next in 2009.

In between the recording and release of albums Tyr is a very active live unit; while not in the recording studio the band will most often be on a tour somewhere.

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Buy TYR Music


By The Light Of The Northern StarBy The Light Of The Northern Star
Napalm Records 2016
$11.97
$11.99 (used)
ValkyrjaValkyrja
Metal Blade 2013
$6.57
$8.00 (used)
Eric The RedEric The Red
Napalm Records 2016
$10.90
$4.98 (used)
LandLand
Napalm Records 2016
$10.11
$10.10 (used)
RagnarokRagnarok
Napalm Records 2016
$13.98
$8.99 (used)
How Far To AsgaardHow Far To Asgaard
Napalm Records 2016
$9.46
$9.45 (used)
The Lay Of ThrymThe Lay Of Thrym
Napalm Records 2011
$9.98
$4.99 (used)
Land (CD/DVD)Land (CD/DVD)
Limited Edition
Napalm /Spv 2008
$12.99 (used)
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TYR discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

TYR top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.04 | 11 ratings
How Far To Asgaard
2002
3.19 | 21 ratings
Eric The Red
2003
4.00 | 18 ratings
Ragnarok
2006
2.56 | 16 ratings
Land
2008
2.75 | 19 ratings
By The Light Of The Northern Star
2009
3.19 | 17 ratings
The Lay of Thrym
2011
3.64 | 11 ratings
Valkyrja
2013

TYR Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

TYR Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

TYR Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

TYR Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

4.00 | 1 ratings
Tyr Demo
2000
3.00 | 1 ratings
Olavur Riddararos
2002

TYR Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 How Far To Asgaard by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.04 | 11 ratings

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How Far To Asgaard
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars While the tiny little territory called the Faroe Islands may hardly be on anybody's radar as far as the world metal music scene is considered, this little rugged subpolar archipelago located just north of the UK and equidistant between Norway and Iceland could be considered an extension of the Scandinavian music scene in general. With only a population slightly over 50,000 inhabitants, the tiny territory has produced a significant number of metal bands alone (as well as other musical genres) ranging from Heljareyga, Hamferğ, Vernon, Synarchy, Asyllex, Hatursvart, Terji to this review's subject of choice TİR which has managed to poise themselves as the islands' greatest musical export. All these musical connections result in the fact that the Faroe Islands are an autonomous country within the Kingdom of Denmark with close ties to Copenhagen as well as the rest of the Nordic lands. The culture traces its language and history back to Old West Norse from the Middle Ages and the language is closely related to Icelandic which makes it one of the closest linguistic connections to the old Viking tongues of the past.

Not surprisingly the subject matter TİR is almost exclusively steeped in Viking lore, mythology and history. Their name itself is derived from the god of law and justice in the Norse religion and the music is heavily steeped in kvæği, the traditional folk music of the Faroe Islands which consists of stanzas plus a chorus sung between every verse. The band was formed in 1998 when Heri Joensen and Kári Streymoy decided to get together and jam which resulted in a similar outlook of creating a style of musical that was designed to break down the walls that have been erected between the various styles of metal the that have been created thus the music of TİR is a unique blend of power, doom, progressive, Viking, folk and traditional classic metal. The debut album "How Far To Asgaard" may sound like a tribute to the Lord Of The Rings style Tolkien-based themes but in reality "Asgarard" is one of the Nine Worlds and home to the Æsir tribe of gods in Norse Mythology. For the debut Pól Arni Holm was recruited for vocals and Gunnar H. Thomsen for the bass parts.

While TİR would develop quite the epic progressive metal sound on subsequent albums, on the debut, "How Far To Asgaard" displays their knack for mixing all the styles of metal ingredients dispersed throughout the metal universe around a mostly traditional Faroese folk style of compositional construction complete with homegrown musical scales and quirky time signatures. The album starts off feeling more like a doom metal release with chugging and slowed down tempos as "Hail To The Hammer" and "Excavation" delve into the Viking world lyrically and plod along with downtrodden doom inspired riffs constructed with a folk feel and a progressive metal methodology of incorporating high register vocals and challenging time signature jitteriness. A classic 80s metal feel comes into the picture as well as the metal aspects tend to have a somewhat classic compositional style with verses, choruses and virtuosic guitar solos. The mix of all these styles may sound quite strange at first and it took me a few spins for "How Far To Asgaard" to sink in as i found i needed to calibrate my sensibilities to its quirky idiosyncrasies but after i did so found myself really loving the intricacies of how these tracks were constructed and the melodies become quite catchy once you catch the Faroese vibe.

My favorite tracks are those that think outside the box such as "Ten Wild Dogs" which uses a hammer on guitar lick as the guitar with a slightly warped sense of rhythm yet existing in the general framework of the established fusion sound TİR have created. While the tracks are definitely metal based with Faroese folk mixed in, the track "Ormurin Langi" is a metal version of a traditional Faroese song and if anyone if familiar with some of the Pagan leaning black metal bands of Norway, Sweden and Finland such as Enslaved and Moonsorrow, this traditional style of Nordic folk music should sound quite familiar. The lyrics are mostly in English on "How Far To Asgaard" but native Faroese is also used in some choruses and of course on the traditional. Here's another debut that i find myself against the grain on. True that it requires a little indoctrination to the subtleties and an education into the ethnomusicology folklore that it derives from, but once i put this on while driving on full audio emersion, i found i loved this one a lot as it's some of the most authentic fusion of ethnic folk music and modern day metal i've ever heard and doesn't resort to some of the beer chugging bards of future albums. Nice harmonics, instrumental counterpoints and history lessons. Excellent!

"How Far To Asgard" has been released twice. One with the original ominous purple sea album cover with the rune inspired band logo and again with an artistic vision of the Faroese landscape with Vikings gazing out from the clouds above. This second version re-released in 2008 on Napalm records after the band found more worldwide success contains the two bonus tracks "Ólavur Riddararós" and "Stırisvølurin" which are two more examples of traditional Faroese folk music dressed up in metal clothing and are highly recommended. Not only do i like the second release better for the artwork and extra two tracks, but all the bad production gripes i've encountered regarded this album seem to have been rectified on this second go at it. While it's taken me a while to get into the music of TİR, i have to admit that after hearing a few albums, it was this debut that made it all click and now i'm hooked.

 The Lay of Thrym by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2011
3.19 | 17 ratings

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The Lay of Thrym
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

3 stars 'The Lay Of Thrym' - Tyr (6/10)

The Faroe Islands are not a place that many know anything about, let alone that they are home to one of the biggest Viking metal bands out there. Tyr is a band that takes their love of Norse mythology and makes music surrounded by it, and while this is certainly nothing new for a metal genre that has been worshiping the icy gods virtually since its inception, their highly melodic and clean-vocalized approach to viking metal tends to send them apart somewhat from the legions of other Viking revivalists. 'The Lay Of Thrym' shows a band that is very familiar with their sound and the science of making Viking metal music. On that note, there is nothing new here that listeners of Tyr will not immediately identify with, but their legacy of catchy and melodic mythos-inspired metal lives on here.

I will make it clear from the beginning that Viking metal is not something I find myself all too enthused by, seeing as there are only so many albums and songs that can be written about the ancient stories. On the other hand, Tyr do have a identifiable sound to them, thanks largely to the vocals of Heri Joensen. It is not necessarily that his voice is distinct, but rather the fact that in a genre where vocalists tend to rumble and snarl, he opts for an incredibly clear, only slightly accented melodic voice. The music huddles around the vocal strengths of Tyr, as is evidenced by their songwriting. Although Tyr's songwriting gets somewhat tired by the end of the album, they do know how to write a catchy song, and the choruses to each of these will have you at least humming along by the end of it.

'The Lay Of Thrym' certainly is about being Norse and in no dearth of reverence for the old gods, but the thing that actually had me even just a little surprised by the album was the fact that Tyr was expanding their lyrical themes to address other issues. As one might expect, 'Shadow Of The Swastika' is about Nazis, and although a stranger to this band might suddenly think based on the title that Norse mythology is not the only thing that Tyr wants to revive, the band openly condemns the neo-Nazi movement, as well as all of the National Socialist bands that give metal a bad name. The lyrics are not particularly poetic- as anyone who has heard the song may agree- but undeniably effective. With 'Take Your Tyrant', they continue this style of good-guy lyrics, and while it is an interesting change of pace to see a metal band writing lyrics about things advocating the good and well-being of mankind (as opposed to its depravity and destruction), they usually are not particularly interesting.

For someone looking for upbeat, catchy, and even slightly (but only slightly) progressive Viking metal, Tyr's 'The Lay Of Thrym' may be a good album to check out. The album does not pass me as being great or excellent, and while the upbeat melodic nature of Tyr can feel a little too shallow for the album's length, there are enough strong tracks and originality to be worth checking out.

 By The Light Of The Northern Star by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2009
2.75 | 19 ratings

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By The Light Of The Northern Star
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by toroddfuglesteg

2 stars Tyr continues their viking raids.

Sorry, could not resist this pun. But the viking clad Tyr is off course playing on this image. So does Enslaved and Einherjer too. Just as Bathory did twenty years ago. There are some diffeences though between those bands and Tyr.

Tyr has gone down the commercial route during the last albums. There are still a lot of metal in their sound. But strip away the metal and you find a hymn singing band with a lot of celtic and nordic folk music added to the sound. This sound is then again enhanced with blazing guitars, drums and bass in the same vein as Manowar. A lot of Manowar, in fact. Tyr is clearly operating in the same scene as Manowar. And that is in most people's books not a compliment. Not in my book, anyway.

It all comes down to quality. This album does have a lot of blazing guitars and noise, but not any really good tracks. It feels like Tyr is running on empty here and the art of good songwriting has deserted them as much as the fish has deserted their shores. Hence, this album is nothing more than half decent and a sure dust collector in my music collection.

2 stars

 Ragnarok by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2006
4.00 | 18 ratings

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Ragnarok
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by MeThos_valdroa

5 stars Ragnarok is Tır's magnum opus. For the first time it seems like they get everything right and have the courage to leave some of the tired clichés that inhabit the world of folk metal, behind.

Divided in eight chapters, Ragnarok tells the story of the end of the world and it's resurface according to Norse mythology. This sets the mood for an intelligent viking metal album. As for the music itself, Tır reaches their peak as songwriters. Flawlessly seaming traditional folk song structure with progressive metal, they create a very melodic and innovative listen. Not every track is a song in it's own right though, a lot of songs are ambient and serve as an "introduction" to the main song. Highlights include Wings of Time, The Rage of The Skullgaffer and Lord of Lies. This is also the only Tır album of which the special edition features some very good bonus tracks. This edition is well worth the extra money On this record which has crystal clear production, Tır shows that they can really play their instruments. Again, the two guitar players really stick out, just listen to The Rage of The Skullgaffer, which only contains two guitars playing counterharmonics.

It's a shame that this is the creative highlight for this band. Then again, Ragnarok is an excellent addition to any music collection and a gem in an otherwise repetitive genre.

4,5/5*

 Eric The Red by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.19 | 21 ratings

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Eric The Red
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by MeThos_valdroa

4 stars Eric the Red was the founder of the first settlement of Greenland. Tır's second album of the same name is their first of very decent quality and a good introduction to Tır's music.

Tır now incorporates more folk within their music. Instead of choosing to let exotic instrumentation add flavor to their music, Tır focuses on playing traditional Faroese song structures within a heavy metal framework. The result is a very melodic progressive metal album.

The production of Eric The Red has taken a huge step forward. As for songwriting, this album is uneven. It is one of those records were you want to skip a song in order to hear the next track. Some songs are great, like The Edge, Regin Smiğur, Ólavur Riddararós and my favorite Tır song "Ramund Hin Unge". Sometimes the rest of the album seems a bit unfocused, but it is never a real issue as there is no bad song to be found. As musicians, Tır has grown a lot. Henri Joensen has taken over vocal duties and his voice sounds a lot stronger than his predecessor. Joensen en Skibenæs really stick out as guitar players, playing solos with great ease.

With Eric the Red, Tır has taken a huge step forward. Even though Eric The Red is uneven and some songs lack a progressive approach, there are some true gems to be found on this record. If you like the concept of vikings but are tired of the genre's lack of creativity or if you don't like growling, you will not be disappointed.

 How Far To Asgaard by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2002
3.04 | 11 ratings

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How Far To Asgaard
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by MeThos_valdroa

2 stars Tır's music consists of Progressive Metal mixed with traditional Faroese compositions with lyrics romanticizing vikings and the old Norse religion. Every creative thought in folk metal should be cheriched, so the time has come to review some Tır.

Tır's debut could be better. It suffers from uninteresting production and some boring songwriting. The most promising stuff are songs like Ormurin Langi, which is most loyal to the original song. Hail to the Hammer has become a fan favorite, but other than that the rest of the album is quite forgettable. Tır doesn't strive into new territories, they keep mainly true to the safe and overpopulated heavy metal genre.There are no exotic instruments, just your regular 2 guitars, 1 bass and 1 drum outfit. The real strength of the album is that it tries to create an atmosphere of long forgotten times were vikings roamed. And sometimes, they succeed. The musicianship is good, but in the future the musicians of Tır will eventually grow into very capable players.

It isn't a bad start, but it could be better. In future releases, Tır learns from their mistakes by embracing their traditional Faroese influences. On how far to Asgaard, Tır makes a lot of mistakes. But you have to start somewhere.

 By The Light Of The Northern Star by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2009
2.75 | 19 ratings

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By The Light Of The Northern Star
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by arcane-beautiful

4 stars This is an album that took me ages to get around listening to, but I mainly heard it as other mediums, i.e. in the keyboardist of my band's family car (her name is Cathy btw, just so I don't have t give her a long finger aching pronoun.

This is her kind of music, folk metal with very catchy chorus, and gang vocals, basically drinking music. Now I prefer my battle metal as long and epic songs (mainly Moonsorrow and early Tır).

This album is a bit of a different direction from their earlier material with Bathory like long epic songs (me and my brother agree that true Viking Metal is what Bathory origianly did in the early 90's and the late 00's)

This was a great album, with some amazing songs, and maybe the odd filler, but it's overshadowed.

1. Hold The Heathen Hammer High - Pretty epic with a frantic chorus. Great song for a single. 9/10

2. Tróndur í Gøtu - This is a song that was definelty played in Cathy's car on long journeys. The language flows so well in this song. Amazing chorus. 10/10

3. Into The Storm - Nice chorus. Pretty cool guitar solo. 8/10

4. Northern Gate - Pretty cool riffing. A wee bit repetitive. 7/10

5. Turiğ Torkilsdóttir - Love the vocal intro. Sounds backwards. Great instrumental work. 9/10

6. By The Sword In My Hand - Best song on the album. Amazing chorus. This is an amazing car journey song. 10/10

7. Ride - This is the most played song in Cathy's car. Amazing song. The main riff rules. 10/10

8. Hear The Heathen Call - Great chorus. Very folky and drunken disordly. 9/10

9. By The Light Of The Northern Star - Very epic chorus. Great ending.

CONCLUSION: This was really enjoyable. Everyone should buy it really.

 Eric The Red by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2003
3.19 | 21 ratings

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Eric The Red
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by J-Man
Prog Reviewer

3 stars Viking Metal with a Twist

Tır is definitely an interesting band, and their second outing, Eric the Red is definitely an interesting album. While at its heart and soul this is a Viking metal album, Tır isn't comfortable with being just that. They incorporate power metal, prog, and traditional folk music influences into a traditional Viking metal sound. The result is something fresh and new, albeit somewhat lacking in consistency and coherence. Still, Viking metal is one of those genres that can either be really great or really cheesy. While Tır isn't up there with the greats, they are one of the few bands in the middle.

Eric the Red is a pretty good album if you like Viking metal mixed with power metal, folk music, and some minor prog influences. I can't say that I'm a particularly big fan of all these genres, but Tır combines these styles in an often seamless and accessible way, something that I applaud the band for doing. Not many bands can create a truly unique sound without being extremely incoherent and all over the place, and although Tır could use some improvement, they are generally consistent. Compositionally, Eric the Red is lacking a bit, and that's why my excitement with this album is somewhat stifled. Although their sound is developed and professional, many of the songs are surprisingly weak. They can simply become too trivial and boring, especially by the end of the album.

Eric The Red consists of 10 tracks and has a 60:16 playing time, which is much too long for this type of music. If you have the 2006 Napalm Records re-release (like I do), you get 2 bonus tracks (which are completely unnecessary) and the album has a ridiculous 70:31 playing time. The bonus tracks aren't very good, so I don't recommend wasting your time searching for the re-release. The album is extremely frontloaded, and all of the memorable tracks are at the front. The first two songs (The Edge and Regin Smiğur) are superb, 4 star material, but from there the album progressively takes a downhill dive. By the end of the album all the songs sound the same and become extremely trivial. Not all of the songs are bad, but the album is just too long for its own good. If this were 35-40 minutes, and contained songs on par with the first two songs I would be much more enthusiastic.

Tır is a tight playing, talented unit. These guys are simply a joy to listen to, and I have no complaints in terms of musicianship.

The production is fantastic. Everything sounds clear and audible, without being so polished that there is no emotion or power. The production has a "punch", is clean, and is powerful, so there's nothing more I could ask from a metal album.

Conclusion:

Eric the Red is a good album, and comes recommended to people who like folk/viking metal with progressive and power metal influences. This is a flawed album compositionally, but I rarely give an album with great production, tight musicians, and an original sound less than 3 stars, and I won't make an exception here.

 By The Light Of The Northern Star by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2009
2.75 | 19 ratings

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By The Light Of The Northern Star
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by snobb
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

2 stars Folk-metal band from Faroe Islands. Melodic combination of simple power metal and Nordic folk songs. Sounds unusual at the beginning, but very soon you will be bored. Musical formula isn't very complex, and musicians just use it again and again for each their song.

All album sounds as Helloween work, placed on Vikings land and reworked for local listeners. Each song is short metal folk ballade ( with great energy but very repetitive musical sound), or war song, adapted for metal heads. Possibly, could be a great soundtrack for pseudo-historical Viking battles movie. In all cases, Helloween (or Manowar, in US version) do it better.

 Land by TYR album cover Studio Album, 2008
2.56 | 16 ratings

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Land
Tyr Progressive Metal

Review by toroddfuglesteg

2 stars Tyr continues their viking raid with their Land album. Their previous album Ragnarok was pretty good. The reason was that Ragnarok was more based on the Faroe Island's very rich song tradition. Unfortunate, this was a one off album from Tyr. On Land, they return to a more commercial sound again. That means Land is based on German power metal with some Faroe Islands and Scandinavian folk music thrown into the mix.

The result is a pretty boring album. The songs are OK, but nothing more. Tyr's novelty factor is wearing pretty thin now after four albums. Good songs are required, but they are not here. All songs feels the same. There is no killer tracks. The end result is therefore pretty dull. I am afraid this it not my cup of mjoed. I am sending the vikings packing. Bring some blonde women next time and leave your instruments behind. OK ?

2 stars

Thanks to windhawk for the artist addition.

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