Across their six previous studio albums, the folk group Garmarna have never been ones to shy away from gruesome tales and grave circumstances in their music. Ahead of their upcoming album Förbundet (“connected” in Swedish), their first as part of Season of Mist’s roster and seventh overall, the band has unleashed the lead single “Ramunder.” The ballad tells the story of a brutal warrior who has no qualms about decimating his enemies and doing so with a smile. It is based around the centuries-old tale of Ramund, a world-travelled warrior with no fear and even less remorse.
As the band themselves explain:
“We have always gravitated towards gruesome and horrid tales. And in that regard 'Ramunder' easily takes the crown. The song tells the tale of a fierce warrior that ravages his enemies for (it seems) the sheer joy of it. This is of course reflected in the music with its relentless savage stomp, distorted basses and barb wired mora harps. The track contains a guest appearance by Anders Norudde from the groundbreaking Swedish folk band Hedningarna, that was an early inspiration during our formative years. We´re very happy to present this knuckle sandwich of a song as a first teaser of our forthcoming album Förbundet, to be released on November 6.”
Christopher Juul, who has recently played on albums by Heilung and Myrkur, produced this unconventionally heavy song. The vocals of singer Emma Härdelin bring an air of levity to this bleak track, punctuated by the violence of the building instrumentation and seething percussion. An irresistible melody about an irresistible force, “Ramunder” is a great spin on folk rock, taking the genre into murkier territory than what it is normally associated with.
Watch the striking music video for “Ramunder” below:
Pre-orders for Förbundet, which comes out on November 6th via Season of Mist, are available here.