Saltatio Mortis - Wer Wind Sæt
Napalm Records
Medieval Folk / Hard Rock
12 songs (51:57)
Release year: 2009
Saltatio Mortis, Napalm Records
Reviewed by Kyle

As much of a modern Folk Metal buff as I am, I was honestly surprised that I had never heard of German band Saltatio Mortis until I received the promo for their latest release, Wer Wind Sæt. That fact that they had gone unnoticed by me was made even more surprising after doing a small amount of research on the band and found out that they had been active for nearly ten years and that all of their albums (sans their debut) had been released on Napalm Records, a label I follow quite regularly. The reason for their lack of presence in my life becomes very apparent after just the first few songs, however; This isn’t Folk Metal, this is more of Folk Hard Rock. I can appreciate a good, heavy rock band once in a while, but right from the first moments after pressing the play button, I knew this album was definitely not for me.

Saltatio Mortis play a style of Medieval Folk Rock that’s very heavy on simple power chord patterns, bagpipes, and annoying German vocals. Not that I have anything against the German language; the singer’s voice just comes across as rather obnoxious at times. He sounds fine on certain tracks when he tries to be more aggressive (Kaltes Herz comes to mind), but for the most part his vocals sound fairly nasally. As mentioned, they incorporate heavy bagpipe usage into their songs that adds a nice layer to the sound, but they actually have FOUR bagpipe players, which seems quite ridiculous… in fact, looking at the list of band members, it appears Saltatio Mortis has eight band members overall. Most play more than one instrument, though some members seem rather unnecessary. Two drummers / percussionists? Really? And a band member that plays what is called “Modern Equipment”? Hmm… I wouldn’t mind this too much if each instrument was put to better use, but typically the only instruments that are actively present are the guitars, bass, vocals, drums, and bagpipes; perhaps if they put the lute, fiddle, and various other Folk instruments to better use, Saltatio Mortis could be a much more entertaining band, but the way they implement them now is done in a way that could easily be performed by half of the members they use currently.

The music isn’t really THAT bad; it’s actually very catchy at parts. It has a very 80’s vibe at times (See Rastlos, which reminds me of something that The Cult might do), and it often strays into traditional Heavy Metal territory (Manus Manum Lavat and Salome are good examples of this, the latter of these being similar to an Axxis track). Most of the bagpipe melodies are very enjoyable and memorable, and while that’s great, there’s not much else to the music to keep you coming back for more. If you’re like me, you’ll most likely listen to it a few times, enjoy the small amount of fun it provides, and then never listen again. It’s simplistic, unoriginal, and uninspired Folk Rock that doesn’t try to stand out in any way, and after you’ve heard the same power chord lines beaten into oblivion across twelve tracks, there’s just not any reason to desire any more from this band.

Killing Songs :
They're all fairly equal in quality, none of them are "Killer" though
Kyle quoted 64 / 100
Other albums by Saltatio Mortis that we have reviewed:
Saltatio Mortis - Das Zweite Gesicht reviewed by Jack and quoted 30 / 100
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