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'For All That Is Damned To Vanish'
(Vic Records)

jools green

Jools Green


It's been thirteen years since Swedish death Metal quartet Portal released their debut album 'Forthcoming' and despite this huge passage of time nothing much has changed in either sound or line-up.

It's also not surprising that there has been such a huge gap given how busy drummer Matte Fiebig (Blodsrit, Ribspreader, Mordinal and Paganizer to name a few) and bassist Emil Koverath (Blodsrit, Carve, Paganizer) have been with all their other projects.

They are finally back with their follow up release 'For All That Is Damned To Vanish', continuing with their blend of heavy yet melodic death Metal that includes some clean vocals and acoustic elements. Lyrically they still are influenced by Scandinavian Viking Metal, continuing to find inspiration in mysticism, Norse/Viking Mythology and Anti-Christianity. Despite the strong links to Paganizer and Ribspreader, sound-wise there is no similarity, Portal have more of an Amon Amarth influence to their sound if anything.

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'For All That Is Damned To Vanish' clocks up a respectable thirty seven minutes over the nine tracks so it's not an overly long album but there is a lot to like about it, particularly the harsh vocals, a brutal growl and the drum work which is an absolute battery on your senses. There is a good flow from one track to the next which helps to make it a good listen.

Opening with 'In the Steps of Forgotten Gods', an intense, compact, chugging track with a melodic segment before a heavy directional change tying things together neatly and with a great solo towards the latter end, getting the album off to a good start.

On 'The Grand Gesture' the melodic element in the direction change is well utilised again, there is a great catchy repeat riff and vocally there is a good mix of harsh and cleans, as on many of the tracks.


The up-tempo 'On Far Trails' has a long but interesting intro that twists and turns making you wonder where the track will go next, maintaining this feel to the end.

'The Wild And The Furious' is a powerful opener, with a mix of intense guitars and roaring vocals, a guitar solo followed by acoustic segment marking a calm drop-away, another varied and interesting track. Opening with fury, 'In Chase For The Sun' and the cleans again harmonise well with the harsh vocals, with a midway drum onslaught and a welcome closing solo breaking it up a bit.

Great drum patterns are highly noticeable across the whole of the album but particularly on 'Kamp' ending on a acoustic and drum fade out. I expected the final track 'Curse Of The Fifth Crown' to continue in this light but the pace and intensity rises back up and you are greeted by an unusual instrumental with a clever discordant edge.

Interestingly the album has no title track as such, but the title does encompass all the tracks.

'For All That Is Damned To Vanish' was recorded at Necromorbus Studios (Watain, Scar Symmetry, Desultory amongst others) and produced by Sverker Widgren (Diabolical, Demonical, Setherial) and mastered by Dan Swanö (Edge of Sanity, Hail of Bullets, Asphyx, Opeth).

Overall 'For All That Is Damned To Vanish' is a pretty good listen. Was it worth waiting thirteen years for? You can decide that!

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Wacken Winter Nights 2018 takes place between February 23rd and 25th 2018 and the great news is that you can now experience a full-on, top class German Metal Festival easily and affordably.

It only takes an hour to fly to Hamburg from London and we've had longer journeys than that within the capital and they were certainly more expensive than the £33 air ticket that just appeared in our 'flights to Wacken Winter Nights' search.


Wacken Winter Nights is organised by the same team who are responsible for the world's greatest Metal festival, Wacken-Open-Air and the 2018 bill includes Skyclad, Orphaned Land, Elvenking, Finntroll, Grave Digger, Aeverium, Comes Vagantes, Coppelius, Corvus Corax, Die Pressgëng, Elvellon, Heimataerde, Hell-O-Matic, Ignis Fatuu, Ingrimm, Irdorath, Johnny Deathshadow, Krayenzeit, Letzte Instanz, Mr Hurley und die Pulveraffen, Pampatut, Pat Razket, Schandmaul, Sündenrausch, The Aberlour's, The Moon And The Nightspirit, Torfrock, Visions Of Atlantis, Vroudenspil, Wind Rose and more.

Besides this rich billing of superb Metal bands, there is so much more to see in the festival area including the medieval market and also the walking acts and jugglers you will meet at the theme worlds, including Robert Blake, three-time World Cup winner of street magic.

Wacken Winter Nights is something not to be missed and you can check out the amazing ticket and accommodation prices right here.

We just priced up the whole four day trip with hotels, flights, shuttles and festival tickets for less than £300 and we don't think you will get a better value festival than that, anywhere.


MetalTalk recently sat down with Wacken founder and owner Thomas Jensen and that interview will be online next week and it's a fascinating insight into how Wacken originated from nothing to become the world's premiere Heavy Metal event.


Wacken 2018 takes place from 2nd to 4th August 20218 and as with Wacken Winter Nights, if you have never experienced all it has to offer, then you owe it to yourself to remedy that.

Already announced for Wacken 2018 are Judas Priest, Nightwish, Running Wild (exclusive), Arch Enemy, Dirkschneider, Doro (Special Anniversary Show), In Extremo, Sepultura, Amorphis, Amaranthe, Firewind, W.A.R., Belphegor, Mantar, Knorkator, Deserted Fear, Watain, Night Demon, Epica, Knorkator, Belphegor, Firewind, Deserted Fear and many more and we'll have more Wacken 2018 announcements during December.

As well as being the greatest Heavy Metal festival in the world, it is without a doubt the Mecca of Metal and the one thing that every single person who loves our music should have on their bucket list.

For 2018, MetalTalk have joined forces with Wacken-Open-Air to help you get to Wacken easily and inexpensively and you can peruse the ticket and travel options right here.

If you are interested in going to Wacken 2018 and have questions, please fill out the form below and we will contact you with answers to all your enquiries. You are under no obligation whatsoever by filling this form out. We won't add you to any mailing lists or send you loads of spam - all we will do is help you get to Wacken as easily and inexpensively as possible.



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