Wardruna: Nordic Folk Music of the Ancients, Rooted in Nature

Originally posted on New Sounds on December 2nd 2018

By John Schaefer

Norwegian band Wardruna creates music born of Nordic history, Norse runes and nature – and is led by multi-instrumentalist and songwriter Einar Selvik, who currently composes music for the TV series Vikings. (He was formerly the drummer in the black metal band Gorgoroth under stage name Kvitrafn, for those keeping track.)

Hear a captivating combination of old and recreated Norse historical instruments: Tagelharpa (bowed harp-lyre), birchbark lure (a trumpet), goat horns), Kraviklyra, instruments from nature: stones, bones, trees, fire and ice, along with sounds captured in nature, vocal techniques of many kinds, and ancient poetry. The latest record, Runaljod – Ragnarok, is the third of a trilogy of musical interpretations of each of the twenty-four old Nordic runes (the word rune can also mean magical song). Wardruna performs some of their unusual, spiritual, ancient sounding-modern ritual music in the studio.

Set list:

  • Wunjo
  • Isa
  • Helvegen