"“Heer” is the second album of the Dutch band Alvenrad (Jasper Strik & Mark Kwint).
I remember the first time when I listened to that album. The other summer day outside the Prophecy Fest somewhere not far away from Dortmund we were drinking beer along with guys from Alvenrad and were listening to their music from a car soundsystem. I was impressed and felt like my head was hit by a sledgehammer a minute by minute without any mercy. It did sound powerfully and excellent.
Only first tunes may make you think it is a next folk metal album. But there is a catch. Guys from Alvenrad give you a journey back to 1960s and 1970s but using the 21st century music time machine.You will get here all the best from 60ies and 70ies – fantastic riffs, powerfull drums and bass. The other thing are Hammond organs here. They are ubiquitous. It seems Jasper Strik must have married them the other day or signed a pact with some horn ancient god to use them all the time and to have Mark Kwints guitar and voice by his side instead . But it is not any obstacle to enjoy listening to “Heer”. Just opposite, Hammond organs make Alvenrad superb. Vocals on this release are the next gem in a crown. Mark Kwint has got such powerfull voice which he could knock Jericho walls down with. He`s got a voice and he knows how to use it. All the tracks are very melodic. Each of them could be a hit both in 1960s/70s and nowadays. Fortunately Alvenrads did not take a chance to make their tracks long and psychedelic with long boring solos to show how great virtuosos they are like the bands from 60s/70s used to do. They just do songs not suites.
So is it rather a hard rock album ? Not completely. The first track “De Hoogzit” sounds very folkish and two other are also topped with folk sauce : “De zonne-ever” and “Omheind”.
The other thing are lyrics. They are quite personal but strongly based in the mythology world of Icelandic Edda, in particular they are some kind of an adaptation of the poem Skírnismál.
What else makes this album spicy is Marcus Stock – Schwadorf, mastermind of Empyrium, the Vision Bleak, Noekk and Sun of the Sleepless, who mixed and mastered album of the Alvenrads.
What else do you need ? Just the album." - Folk Metal Magazine