Spanish melodic death metallers Jotnar, coming from the Canary Islands, released their debut album, entitled Connected/Condemned, on 21st of April this year, five years after their EP Giants. Let’s see what the guys have in store for us!
The very beginning of the first song, which is also the title track, sound like straight from an early Linkin Park album – but only shortly, and then we experience some clearly In Flames-inspired melodeath. Funny combination, but it works out well, and sticks because of its groovy sound. Next up is Remaining Still, which is way more brutal than the previous track – totally awesome. The third track, Missing Shadows, is back to the groovier style in its biggest parts, but nevertheless quite catchy. Broken Esteem then combines these two types of songs into one, making it another one that will stick with you. The next six songs are more “standard Gothenburg” melodeath tracks, albeit very well played. Very fun, after some getting-used-to, is the Nelly Furtado cover Say It Right. Envy World, the album’s second last song, is quite alike the starters and thus a great ending. The very last one is called The Portrait and features Jennie Nord. After a rather brutal start the song softens quite a lot and is more of a ballad – which is nice, given that none of the likes can be found on the rest of the album.
In conclusion: Jotnar’s Connected/Condemned is a great album. The musicianship is brilliant, and is best reflected in the first 4 songs of the album and a great Nelly Furtado cover. While the remainder of the songs still is very well executed, the songs themselves are more generic melodeath tunes and somewhat loose the very unique style that made the first songs so great. Connected/Condemned is nevertheless a very strong release and will surely please any fan of the genre. Go ahead and listen to it, and keep your eye out for this band! 9/10.
You can also check our interview with Jotnar here.