What happens when you combine geekery, the great north of the United States and a love of extreme metal music, you get Frosthelm. Self proclaimed lovers of all things MMORPGs and cheese, the Minot natives let loose their EP “The Northwinds Rend Flesh”. I wasn’t even aware Minot could spell metal but having gotten a quick blackened thrash education from Frosthelm, I now know that great metal music can come from even the farthest reaches of no-where-Dakota. This may seem a tad harsh but all of my family comes from that area of the country, been there many times, and it is really out in the middle of nowhere. Hearing this quality of music from unlikely places is really one of the biggest bonuses of this gig.
On to the brutality that is Frosthelm. “The Northwinds Rend Flesh” weighs in with only four all to short songs one just as brutal as the next. Opening with the title track we are catapulted somewhere between more traditional blackened death style metal with a healthy dose of some more progressive elements à la Obscura. ‘Goblindriver’ continues to push their ear assault even further. Solid pounding riffs, driving bass and drums, and vocals with just the right amount of growl and visceral scream combined. Excellent fretwork connect the riffs without seam or pause.
‘Reaping the Seeds of Corruption’ has a little more of a “traditional” death metal vibe, fast, brutal, and to the point. The last track ‘Damage Over Time’ harkens back to the first two tracks in style and form. This track has some great hooks in it and is probably the standout for me. This EP, and yes I know EPs are supposed to be short, was over way to quick. A bonus of a quick shot like this is when you have to go out at midnight because you forgot to get milk you can pop this on and finish it while you are out.
Another lesson learned that great music can come from anywhere be it Minneapolis in the form of Oak Pantheon or Minot in the form of Frosthelm. It is great to see fellow Americans creating epic extreme metal. The powerhouse may still be Nordic in nature but we have our foot in the door and with more talent like Frosthelm who knows. In short find this and get this you wont be disappointed.