Nov 152016



In this post we present the premiere of a lyric video for a song called “Crimson Stronghold” by the Ukrainian band Balfor, whose ranks include current or former members of Khors, Raventale, and Hate Forest. It comes from their first new album in six years, Black Serpent Rising, which is projected for release by Drakkar Productions on January 15, 2017.

“Crimson Stronghold” is immense in its sound, produced in a way that causes it to shiver the spine and crack the skull. And it’s powerful in other ways as well, apart from the sheer, almost-physical impact of the riffs and rhythms.


Photo by George Lazurenko


The music is dramatic, intense, and cloaked in a heavy mantle of darkness. It includes passages of bleak, sweeping melody as well as barbaric, flesh-threshing assaults. Yet as obsidian and grim as the music is, you can feel the fire that fuels its huge, swelling and hammering movements, not only through the song’s surging force but also from the boiling rage that pours through the harsh vocals and a striking extended guitar solo in the song’s second half.

This is a potent melding of black and death metal with a strong melodic component that makes the music memorable as well as viscerally compelling.


Black Serpent Rising was recorded at More Music Studio in Kyiv, Ukraine. It was mixed and mastered at Blacklight Studio by Shaddar (Khors, Ulvegr, etc.), and the cover artwork was created by Ukrainian artist Nurgeslag (Rotting Christ).

The full track list for Black Serpent Rising is as follows:

Serpents Of The Black Sun
Dawn Of Savage
Unbounded Wrath Of Venom
Heralds Of The Fall
Among The Fallen Ones
A Vulture’s Spell
Crimson Stronghold

BALFOR on the Web:



  1. Their 2010 album Barbaric Blood is one of very few and rare occasions where I have broken my own rule and reviewed “old” albums, due to its extremely delightful nature. The album is like a tanks that refrains from camouflage all together, and rather goes berserk with flamboyant flame paint.

  2. excellent! will now have to check out the back catologue!

  3. Found yet another kickass band. Thanks NCS!

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