is the first album by band Ensiferum. It was released on January 7.
Ensiferum was founded in 1995 by Markus Toivonen (guitar), Sauli Savolainen (bass) and Kimmo Miettinen (drums). For the band’s name, they took the Latin neuter gender adjective ensiferum, which means “sword bearer”. In the next year, Jari Mäenpää was taken into the band as singer and second guitar-player. In 1997, the first demo was released, containing three songs.
The highly stylized logo of Ensiferum has appeared on all of their releases. In 1998, Sauli and Kimmo left the band and were replaced by Jukka-Pekka Miettinen (Kimmo’s little brother, then 14 years old) and Oliver Fokin. In January 1999, a second demo was recorded, which although it did not produce a recording deal, boosted the band’s confidence.
Ensiferum is an album that truly defines the genre of folk metal. Still this is probably one of the better folk metal albums you will come across; you could certainly do a lot worse than listening to Ensiferum’s self titled debut if you direly needed to listen to listless music that eschews the tenants of heavy metal so they can wank around with weird folk instruments.
Jari Mäenpää Markus Toivonen Jukka-Pekka Miettinen Oliver Fokin