We asked Mathias Gyllengahm , the mastermind of Utmarken to say a few words of his new album instead of writing review.
01 – Förfallstid (Time of decay)
The word “Förfallstid”, can roughly be translated to “Time of decay”. It’s an old local word from this area representing a time period between winter and spring when the ice is too frail to walk, but still too thick fish from a boat. You cannot pull a timber sleigh out of the woods since the ground is not frozen, yet there is a lot of snow left. Too early to sow, too late to hunt… A pretty worthless time period, where people back in the days could just hope for spring to arrive, and that their supplies would not run out meanwhile.
In times of distress and decay people do what they have always done throughout mankind. They try to survive, and they often look for a saviour, someone that solves their problems. The message of this track is clear. There is no saviour. It echoes the words of Dråparen – salvation comes from within yourself, and must be fought for.
All cultures have a time of build-up, a peak – and a time of decay, before the dying culture is replaced by something new. Empires grow strong, and continue to expand until they collapse under their own weight, and when they do, everything becomes uncertain. Unstability. History shows that this pattern repeats itself, over and over again.
02 – Vintervind (Winter wind)
A song about the cold winter wind, sweeping in over the northlands, bringing distress and decay.
03 – Ifrån byn (From the village)
A tale sung in dialect about the mother of an infant, walking a frozen road from the village with her baby held to her breast. She asks for shelter and food at a farm, but their supplies have been plundered by strangers. So she wanders away with her child on her path… off into the eternal embrace.
04 – Kamplåt (Anthem/Warrior’s song)
A track that calls for honour, courage and heroic deeds. About getting out in the uncertain, into unknown territory and a calling to the gods for strength and advice in the everlasting battle of life. Don’t wait until tomorrow!
05 – Bröder i strid (Battle brothers)
About being in a gang, a pack. About the laws of brotherhood, helping each other, standing together, in a battle against the entire world. About taking pride in being excellent together. My honour and success is yours, and yours is mine – and the world is ours!
06 – Vårdröm (Spring dream)
Summer is better in the spring. When you have everything left to look forward to. When everything is possible. But if you should go into the night, keep your head high. Only one thing is certain; death.
07 – Läk dig själv (Heal yourself)
Some of the inspiration for this track comes from it being 150 years ago since there was a serious famine in Norrland, but it also comes from a bit of genealogy. I read about some of my ancestors and their lives further into the country back in the days. Almost exclusively stories about extreme poverty and early death! And although it was famine in Norrland, down south they had record harvests, but instead of sending aid up here they sold it overseas, as food for horses that pulled trams. The main message of the song is to just keep going. Noone will shed any tears for you anyway.
08 – Dit anden går (Where the spirit goes)
Simply a song about being exhausted, of being burned out.
09, 10 – Lidandets väg (The path of suffering)
Poor mankind, why do you so desperately want to suffer? In dire times: keep your spirit strong, and sing a song to everything beautiful. Even though everything goes down the drain.
11 – Mitt Norrland (My Norrland)
A modest proposal for a new national anthem of Norrland. Grim beauty, sadness and awe… Tons of melancholy. Which equals to Norrland!
Released on 17/06/2017, self-released