Saturday, March 27, 2010


Elvenking is a power metal band hailing from Sacile, Italy. They are heavily influenced by the folk metal pioneers Skyclad, and as expected, their music also exhibits some folk metal influences.

They have 5 albums out: the first 3, Heathenreel, Wyrd, and The Winter Wake, are heavily folk influenced, while their later album, The Scythe, is darker and more pop sounding. Their latest release is a "mostly" acoustic album, Two Tragedy Poets which is even more folk influenced than their earlier albums, but also retains the pop influence of their previous album. It contains some acoustic versions of their earlier songs, and questionable songs such as their cover of the pop hit "Heaven is a Place on Earth." O_o

Elvenking has had various different violinists contribute to their band. On Heathenreel they had a guest violinist, Paolo Polesel. Then they had Elyghen, who seems to be their main violinist, who played on Wyrd and The Winter Wake. When Elyghen temporarily left the band, Lethien came in to fill his place. They also had a tour violinist named Eleonora. (The picture to the left is of Elyghen)

The Winter Wake is a good representation of their overall style, and the violins play a very prominent role in the music. They play usually fast, moving fiddle-like parts, and often double with the guitars or vocals on the main melody of the song. The violins are in almost every song and they are usually mixed very high. The violin definitely gets treated like an important instrument and an important component of the band, which is a rare find in metal. It sounds like they use acoustic violins on their albums, but they use electric violins live. Elyghen uses a Yamaha EV-204.

Recommended songs: "Pagan Purity" (Heathenreel), "Seasonspeech" (Heathenreel), "The Silk Dilemma" (Wyrd), "Neverending Nights" (The Winter Wake), "Another Awful Hobs Tale" (Two Tragedy Poets)

Official site:

Here's a song with prominent violins, representative of their overall style:

And here's a song with intricate violin playing, off their acoustic album:

Resources: [1]

Emilie Autumn - Unlaced

Emilie Autumn is a violinist and singer/songwriter from Malibu, California. Formerly the violinist to Courtney Love, she is now pursuing her own solo project as singer/songwriter. She was classically trained in violin starting at the age of four, and soon found to be talented in the sense of child prodigy status. Bold, eccentric, and sometimes a little frightening, Emilie is not afraid to let her creativity run free, and her penchant for experimenting with her violin playing and sound is what makes her so unique.
Most of her music is classified as Victoriandustrial (a term she made up), a genre combining classical and industrial goth music. This may not be metal, but her violin work definitely is!
Her album Laced/Unlaced is the only album she has put out so far featuring solely her violin work. This album is incredible, and is a must-buy for anyone interested in electric violins or metal violin solos. The first disc Laced showcasing her classical repertoire while the second, Unlaced features her electric violin, a Zeta Strados named Elgar. If you're not interested in her classical work, you can buy the Unlaced songs by themselves on iTunes. Either way, I highly recommend buying it! It features a solo violin with heavy distortion, accompanied by synthesized harpsichord and an electronic drumbeat. Some of her songs feature soloing reminiscent of neo-classical metal guitar solos.

Warning: you will encounter mature/offensive material if you decide to research her on your own or check out her other musics.

Here is a song called "Leech Jar" which features some metal-style shredding on distorted violin:

Resources: [1]