100 / 100
"… an excellent album full of musical harmony … elaborate execution … very catchy … very mature … if you are a fan of bands like Ensiferum, Eluveitie, Finntroll, Korpiklaani among other bands, you will love this album!"
10 / 10
"… an epic album from start to finish … admirable … well-composed … each of the songs is a completely different universe that evokes an accumulation of feelings that go from joy to sadness or anger … if you are a follower of bands whose musical style shows a fusion between Metal and Symphony, you have to listen and enjoy this wonderful work."
(Metal Gods TV)
5 / 5
"… an ambitious and well executed album that had me captivated for its entirety … musicianship and compositional skill of the band is nothing short of phenomenal … I have massive respect for the band for achieving something so epic and magical."
9 / 10
"VARUS have now released their masterpiece in any case ... "A New Dawn" shines above all with its richness of facets, hit-suspicious choruses, a bombastic sound and grandiose riffs."
9 / 10
"… recommend this record to all fans of bands like Crimfall, Blodiga Skald, Ensiferum …"
(Folk Metal NL)
9 / 10
"… absolutely harmonious mixture! Powerful harshness meets bombast and folk ... 'A New Dawn' already pleases at first hearing, but unfolds its full splendour and many details only after several spins."
9 / 10
"… such a blast to listen to … VARUS created a shining example of music that is so much more than the words, that music is a language of its very own … I could imagine mountains and dark caverns, and of course, roaring fire lit taverns … it's easy to enjoy an album that can create scenes the way VARUS does … what a great and fun listening experience!"
9 / 10
"… excellent … at the first impression the main reference is Equilibrium, with some Waylander … quite epic and melodic, varied, with lots of folk parts and including transverse flute, Irish tin whistle and mandolin … all songs are good, but I love the hymn 'A New Dawn' and 'Ein Lebewohl', quite tribal and with awesome flute parts."
(Sounds From Apocalypse)
4 / 5
"… touches on everything that fans of Symphonic Metal and Death Metal would probably like - harsh vocals that would appeal to fans of Wintersun with a guitar and symphonic backing that can be akin to mid era Agathodaimon, but less Black Metal-ish … as grandiose as groups like Septic Flesh go for, but there is still plenty of depth to enjoy."
8,5 / 10
"The recipe consists of a brew of European Power Metal, such as early Blind Guardian, thick classical records as known from Rhapsody and finely cut medieval and folk shreds. They also use instruments like tin whistle, flute and jew's harp."
8,5 / 10
"… despite all variance and hardness, the Franconians always manage to bring enchanting melodies to your ears, which can sometimes cause wet eyes ... as if an international greatness with twenty years of experience was at work ... in the true sense of the word a strong album …"
8,5 / 10
"… one of the best examples of the style so far in 2020 … seems to me that they are a band to discover, being one of those rarities of Metal that for one reason or another - mostly because they don't have a record label - they haven't reached mainstream success …"
(El Lado Oscuro)
80 / 100
"… the whole thing is put together well … power and melody melt together nicely … the gentlemen alternate nicely with tempo and rhythm changes … you discover subdued or tranquil fragments, but also exciting pieces … VARUS provides on 'A New Dawn' a - three-quarters of an hour - beautiful listening experience that is not boring anywhere."
80 / 100
"The pieces must be listened to several times to capture their full potential: they are very stratified and not very immediate at first listening, but once internalized they give great satisfaction."
8 / 10
"… great sounding recording from VARUS … if you are a fan of symphonic and melodic Folk, Black and Death Metal, you should check out this album."
(A Different Shade Of Black Metal)
8 / 10
"… works really well … great mix and variation of moods and influences … have found their style … impressive repertoire."
8 / 10
"On 'A New Dawn' VARUS continue the way of their debut musically and act more mature ... the vocals are definitely more understandable and variable ... as a Pagan-fan you should listen to the album."
8 / 10
"VARUS do not make the mistake to simply copy from well-known Folk Metal bands ... but with melody understanding, tempo changes and the species-appropriate use of a variety of instruments, great songs grow, which in spite of the guttural singing immediately get into your ears and legs ... in my opinion, the Bambergers are at the forefront in this area."
(Rock Castle Franken)
8 / 10
"... Equilibrium references can be heard well at any time, but especially in guitar work, influences of the Finnish genre titans Ensiferum shimmer through ... for fans of the genre representatives mentioned an absolute must buy ... the Bavarians skilfully avoid quoting their own role models, but instead mix their various influences to a thoroughly independent sound ..."
8 / 10
"... epic, multifaceted and complex ... very diversified ... besides cutting riffs the majestic, superficial keyboards are enthroned above everything ... acoustic guitars, melancholic parts, fat choirs, folky and medieval melodies and soundtrack-like bombast collages ... although there is a lot going on here, everything remains straight and catchy ... if you like epic and variable bombast, you should definitely check it out!"
8 / 10
"… joins Viking and Power Metal in a very happy way, to give life to a majestic work, for its epicity and strength … I have to be honest, it's been a long time since I listened, in the epic area, to such an engaging, inspiring release … really great work."
7,8 / 10
"Actually, one could take the easy way out and call the new work by VARUS a mixture of the catchiness of Ensiferum, the epic of Wintersun and the complexity of Turisas. But this would not do justice to 'A New Dawn'. The Franconians have found their own niche in the field of Symphonic Folk Metal and come up with partly great compositions, which are complexly arranged and polished to the smallest detail."
(Time For Metal)
7,5 / 10
"… the titletrack is halfway between Ensiferum (for the epic afflatus) and Equilibrium (for Konstantin's growling and ethnic moments) … a solemn performance … very much like Equilibrium in all the larger than life, fluvial and involving passages … 'The Ministrels Chant' contains a very dedicated homage to Jethro Tull … 'Die letzte Schenke' is like Alestorm, just more extreme … good Germans, who mix a lot of things in their sound!"
7 / 10
"… a varied album with well-crafted compositions that VARUS' Teutons offer us, with the main watchword: 'epic', in the grandiose sense of the term!"
7 / 10
"Channelling an emotional form of symphonic metal, there’s plenty to be found on A New Dawn that leans firmly into the influences of Nightwish, Epica and Kamelot … Konstantin Raab – the mastermind behind the project – plays with impassioned melodies with emanating from his keyboards and his vocals in stunning style."
(Musipedia Of Metal)
3 / 5
"… a multi-faceted album … not at all simple or banal … the reference to medieval settings goes well with the dark vein … able to satisfy a wide audience … full of strength and expressive rendering … full of ideas and able to find the right balance between different styles … they give an extra gear to the current scene."
(All Around Metal)
"Epic symphonic Metal, pervaded with a strong folky influence on the one hand, as well as a good portion of aggressiveness and a dense, dark atmosphere, which you usually know from Black Metal ... coherent and like a one-shot deal."
(Dark Art DE)
"... their 'Epic Bombast Metal' hit me directly ... a thunderstorm ... really well done ..."
"All in all VARUS has succeeded with 'A New Dawn' a really good and above all diversified album, which has a lot to offer with its eight epic, symphonic Folk/Death Metal tracks."
"… the band is able to make a combination of Power, Folk, and Symphonic Black Metal that make everybody – I mean all fans – happy and satisfied … instruments as flute, mandolins, and the harpsichord are very well used … 'Lord Of The Rings' fans will understand the comparison I’m trying to make here - imagine the music of the elves sang by orcs, voilà, that’s it!"
"… profoundly … wonderfully complex … heavy musical journey … epic … atmospheric … a joy to experience."
(Brews And Tunes)
"… a deeply majestic result … with epic eruptions and huge images emerging from the frame … very impressive work … I really listened to it with great interest … well done with the riffs covering all sides, Rock, Metal, Power and Thrash …"
"… catchy character ... absolute hammer ... strongly reminiscent of Ensiferum and Wintersun … most diversified album of the last years … recommendation to buy …"
(The Bavarian Metal-Nerds)
"... with their album 'A New Dawn' they have victory on their side."
"… I like the album very much … based on folklore and tradition, on nature and big landscapes with a powerful instrumental composition … a thundering drum and a very powerful bass provide the rhythmic base of this album … melodies, refrains and choruses are in virtuous contrast to the riffs and guttural voices … the alternation of German and English only enriches the result even more … fantastic!"
(TNT Radio Rock)
"Throughout the album, each song brings its own set of elements to the table which work as standalone songs – almost showcasing the variety folk metal offers to those unfamiliar to the genre … an impressive second album with many promising moments to leave the listener craving to hear what the band will have to offer next."
"… similar to the likes of Rhapsody, mixed with the Death elements of groups such as Finntroll … this playful mix of happy-go-lucky Folk Metal, mixed with the harsh and almost venomous vocals, adds an interesting feel … akin to some of Alestorm's earlier works … similar to classic groups such as Iron Maiden, only heavier … epic … interesting …"
(Dutch Progressive Rock Page)
Bamberg • Germany
Symphonic Folk Metal
A New Dawn
June 27, 2020
VARUS was formed in 2012 as a further development of the party-hearted minstrels of Banjaxed. Elements of folklore and the joy of celebration were retained, but the participants decided to concentrate on their own compositions and to leave the replay of already written works behind.
[ Pic: Wiebke Brandt ]
The band name VARUS refers to the historical Battle of the Teutoburg Forest or the leader of the Roman legions, who took his own life on the battlefield and thus functions as a symbol of the empire pushed back by the Germanic natural tribes.
Formed in the forges of Upper Franconia, VARUS is committed to a lengthy and all-round profound concept:
The equally independent as well as epic and aesthetic fusion of classical music, traditional Folk and pithy Metal.
The initial raw idea developed into a characteristic, dynamic SYMPHONIC FOLK METAL style that strikes an original balance between emotional, atmospheric, epic orchestrations and thunderous, dark guitar thunderstorms.
[ Artwork: Belén Morante Velasco ]
So the four minstrels came together to unite a bundle of orchestral epic, uncompromising hardness, sophisticated structures and melodic Folk influences. Next to trembling bass foundations, brute guitar walls and archaic drums, flute, tin whistle and mandolin also find their place.
In 2014 the band released its debut album "Till The Sun Rises", now they are back in the scene with the brilliant successor "A New Dawn".
Official Lyric Video for the title song "A New Dawn":
VARUS' characteristic and unique creations on "A New Dawn" are held together by sophisticated drum compositions, which also cover more progressive fields, and a hammering bass, which includes funk as well as baroque thoroughbass. The harmonious ensemble is rounded off by wide-ranging guttural vocals and occasional clear vocals, completed by voluminous choral arrangements.
The lyrics of the songs deal with legends, sagas and timeless themes such as freedom, nature romanticism or the art of drinking. The lyrics are deliberately bilingual - in German and English.
01. The Awakening 09:09
02. Tränk dein Herz 02:47
03. A New Dawn 05:27
04. Ascheregen 05:01
05. Ein Lebewohl 09:01
06. Wandel der Zeit 05:40
07. The Minstrels Chant 05:25
08. Die letzte Schenke 04:01
total: 46:31 min.
Konstantin Raab • Lead Vocals, Keyboards, Flutes
Stefan Schwarz • Guitars/Backing Vocals
Norbert Caspar • Bass
Max Betz • Drums
2014 • Till The Sun Rises (Full-length)
2020 • A New Dawn (Full-length)
VARUS are available for interviews via phone, Skype & e-mail
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