Traditional Nordic folk outfit WARDRUNA’s highly anticipated fifth full-length album KVITRAVN is out today, January 22, worldwide via BY NORSE MUSIC and SONY MUSIC / COLUMBIA RECORDS. Order it on various formats and bundles here: https://wardruna.lnk.to/Kvitravn_Album.
“We are very happy to finally share this long-overdue album with you all,” shares founding member and composer EINAR SELVIK. “In the period leading up to the release, it has been truly overwhelming to see how well you have received the songs we have shared so far. We sincerely hope you will enjoy the rest! For me personally, this album represents a natural continuation and development of everything we have done so far. Through experience, reflection and hungry curiosity, we potentially continue to grow as humans, scholars and musicians and with this constant movement, our ability to dive deeper into our work also grows. More clearly than before, this album and its songs address us as humans in our own time. Even though the songs convey ways and words originating from a distant past, they are still just as much ways and words for the ‘now.’ They are ideas born out of the very grounds we still tread, which is also what gives them the ability to speak to and resonate within us still. Let us listen carefully and sow or reaffirm the idea or attitude that nature is something sacred.”
KVITRAVN marks a distinct evolution in WARDRUNA's sound. The album features a broad selection of both traditional and historical instruments such as Kravik-lyre, Trossingen-lyre, Taglharpa, Sotharpa, Langeleik, Crwth, Goat-horn, Lur, Bronze-lur, flute, Moraharpa and also features guest appearances by a small group of prominent traditional singers, spearheaded by Kirsten Bråten Berg, one of the most important custodians of Norwegian traditional song. Throughout its eleven songs, KVITRAVN discusses Northern sorcery, spirit-animals, shadows, nature and animism, the wisdom and meanings of certain myths, various Norse spiritual concepts, and the relation between sage and songs.
The authenticity of WARDRUNA’s performance alongside epic visual landscapes and symbolic animals evoked by the music and lyrics have been showcased in several jaw-dropping videos--some reaching viewers in their millions--starting with the starkly beautiful, minimalist and arguably most political piece, "Grá." The song is an ode to the wolf, and a reminder that humans and creatures have existed side-by-side in a mutual, though wary, relationship. The video for title track "Kvitravn"--translated in English to White Raven--reveals a powerful narrative centered around this sacred, elusive creature, and namesake of the album. SELVIK revealed in a special Solstice broadcast of the Skaldic version of album track "Andvevarljod - Song of the Spirit-weavers" that this particular piece was the starting point for the entire album, and explores the Nordic deities of fate; the Norns, the spinning of life threads and the Norse and Sámi common idea that a person's spirit is connected to wind, both before and after birth. Most recently the lyric video for "Skugge," recalls the subtle majesty of fan-favorite "Helvegen” as it seeks answers and wisdom internally. Finally, the stand-alone single "Lyfjaberg" (not featured on the album) is a powerful reminder of some valuable Norse wisdom explained by SELVIK: "To climb the Healing-mountain is a journey for the mind and spirit as much as the feet and body. Anything of true value, comes at a true cost."
For those looking to delve even deeper into WARDRUNA's world, the band have released a four part mini-documentary series which can be viewed on their YouTube channel HERE. In the series, SELVIK guides the viewer more deeply into the thoughts, processes and inspiration behind the music.
SELVIK will be hosting a special live-streamed event as part of That JORVIK Viking Thing online festival on Saturday, February 20 at 7.30 P.M. CET. Tickets can be booked online at jorvikthing.com.
WARDRUNA have also announced a collaboration with 2204 for an exclusive luxury ethically sourced, 100% vegan candle. Out today, the WARDRUNA candle embraces the harshness of the Norwegian forest’s elements and extracts a sense of reincarnation and fulfilment. Order yours now HERE.