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Habitat (April 2014) : reviews

"This band has a sound all it's own and they sound like they have been doing this for years. I'm really interested in seeing what's next for this band. This band has a magic that I've not seen in a very long time. The sky's the limit for this band."

The Elitistic Metalhead


“This album has a ton of sections for all sorts of metalheads to love. Specifically when it goes Black Metal.”

Aaron Price

"Oh my dear God this album is absolutely incredible. And I will be honest right now, I don’t understand a damn word that is being belted out of these golden lungs. (...) You think one song is *the* song, just wait until you hear the next one. There are vocal choruses that would send Buzzfeed into a juicy tizzy and raucaus death metal growls that could culminate aftershocks across the globe."

Andrew Duncan

Selective Memory

"Originell, offenherzig und stimmungsmäßig mannigfaltig zeigen ALVENRAD auf, dass Metal von Wald und Wiese ganz, ganz toll werden kann, wenn sich seine Macher zuallererst auf die Musik konzentrieren, statt daran zu denken, welch stramme Naturburschen sie sind. 'Habitat' ist schon jetzt zeitlos und versöhnt jedermann, der seit OTYG oder mit stilistischen Abstrichen auch SKYCLAD nicht mehr bangend (bitte englisch aussprechen) das Tanzbein geschwungen hat."

Andreas Schiffmann


“Wer neugierig ist, wie eine spontane Session von Ian Anderson mit Martin Walkyier, Vintersorg und Baumbart nach einigen Gläschen Grüne Fee klingt, sollte unbedingt mindestens zwei Ohren riskieren."

Frank Bender

"ALVENRAD schaffen es in der mittlerweile doch übersättigten Folk Metal-Szene ein eigenständiges, cooles Debüt mit Überraschungen und Frische zu präsentieren. Mit "Verweven Klauwen" haben sie zudem einen abwechslungsreichen, absoluten Knallersong im Gepäck. Heiße niederländische Folk Metal-Kost für Scheuklappenlose - kaufen"

"Eine der großen Stärken von 'Habitat' ist, dass das Album so unvorhersehbar ist, wie man anno 2014 wohl sein kann, ohne Porngrind mit Schlagern zu mischen."

Stephan Möller


"Die beiden Niederländer spielen mit einer solchen Freude und mit einer solchen Ungeniertheit auf, dass man sich während des Hörens manchmal fragt, wo dieser Mut bei einer Vielzahl von bekannten und einst aufregenden Bands geblieben ist."

Jonathan Jancsary



Habitat (April 2014) : interviews

Interview with Raymond Westland for ThisIsNotAScene (in English)

Interview with Metal Soundscapes (in English)

"Im Wald der Kontraste" - Interview by Arlette Huguenin for (in German)

"Positiver, energetischer Metal" - Interview by Stephan Möller for (in German)

Interview with Jonathan Jancsary for (in German)

Further Articles:

Mark Kwint with a "Blood, Fire, Death" shirt in his teens

"An Outlet for the Rebel Heart"
Mark Kwint of Alvenrad on Bathory's masterpiece

This year we are celebrating the 25th anniversary of the album „Blood Fire Death“ from the mighty BATHORY. Could you tell us something about the time when you first listened to this album and what your feelings were at this time?

Mark: I think it must be 9 years ago; every saturday evening me and some friends gathered at a friend's place to listen to metal and drink beer. There I got to listen to Bathory classics such as “A Fine Day to Die” and the title track, as well to songs from the other albums. I felt really attracted to the aesthetics of Bathory. Withal it was and still is an outlet for the rebel heart.

Could you tell us something about your favourite song or favourite moment on “Blood Fire Death”? And what do you like most about “Blood Fire Death”?

Mark: Well, I probably go for the title track for it's encouraging value. But I like to point out that this song and also “A Fine Day to Die” come to fruition by the grace of the mayhem between them. I like to experience the album as a whole in it's importance. A great pairing of atmospheric and in-your-face music.
But if you want to let me choose my favourite moment, it would be the ending of “Blood Fire Death” for the reason that everything on the album falls into place – time to raise from the chair to face life!

What are the reasons “Blood Fire Death” has become such an important album for yourself and your musical bands/career? And how much, do you think, did “Blood Fire Death” influence the whole Viking/Pagan metal scene?

Mark: For me it is important to write true music. I know, 'true' as a word is used vainly a lot, but for me it is still important. Therefore I like to know, with whose legacy I'm dealing. When exploring the history of pagan metal, you can't go beyond Bathory, for he invented the blueprint of pagan metal aesthetics.
Besides the aesthetics the other importance of Bathory is his individual approach of making music - making no compromises! I think, Bathory inspired numerous artists to aim for doing the same. He had his own battle cry, so to speak.
These two things are genuinely court on “Blood Fire Death” in my opinion.
Like Quorthon I find myself drawing inspiration artistically from the Romantic era and heathen legacy, also flirting with darkness, strengthening melancholy... but moreover I'm doing my own thing without compromising. This is implied in myself, but a spirit like Quorthon among other strong ones, did strengthen me to do so. And it is his spirit which is carried by “Blood Fire Death” - greatly, one may say.

When you now look back on the days when “Blood Fire Death” was first released, what feelings does that invoke in you?

Mark: Back then I wasn't paying attention; since I was three years old, I don't remember much from those days. Anyway, Quorthon was a child of his time and only the strong of mind can make timeless music. Still his spirit is carried by time and will encourage me making music, facing life. You know, the first thing one experience with “Blood Fire Death” is it's brutal image; it grabs you by the throat, for you to stand up for your own. At least, that's how I experience the album. In this regard, when I oversee the period from 9 years ago till now, I'm kinda proud of what I achieved in life so far. At least that's the invoked feeling, when looking back at the time the album was released on me. So, in the end Bathory's voice wasn't ineffective!
Answers by Mark Kwint (guitars, vox)

Conducted by Jonathan Jancsary for - thank you, sir!

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