A double dose of Nordic artists here! Danish five-piece MALMØ has tapped Faroese singer Eivør for shared vocal duties on the song “The Way,” taken from MALMØ’s debut album, We Come from The Stars. MALMØ frontperson and namesake Maria Malmoe teams up with Eivør, known quite well for her work on Game of Thrones (a show that’s about as Nordic as they come), to ensure that the song’s vocals consistently match the song’s Gothic gloom no matter what octave needs to be sung.
The first minute-and-a-half of “The Way” showcases vocals (and not much else) that are mostly of a rather high register, with vibrato that echoes the war-cry environments in which Game of Thrones specializes. A subsequent section that’s built on down-tuned, lowly grumbling, slowly lurching guitar riffs features beckoning, mid-octave interplay between the two vocalists. Their considered singing expands the doom that the guitars introduce, as it does in the song’s outro, which employs an expanded breadth of percussive work and ad-lib, chant-like vocal work from both Malmoe and Eivør.
“The Way,” Malmoe has said, is “about getting lost in the woods and finding your way through the wild.” A normal review of a song would go on to point out which sections of the song echo this sentiment and what about the instrumentation achieves this effect, but Malmoe has already done so in her own words: “Ancient voices and tribal drums echo in the deep,” she says. In just nine words, she’s summarized how the song sounds and how she and Eivør’s vocals contrast its percussion.
“You want to run and run without knowing where you’re headed,” Malmoe further says of “The Way.” In mentioning this, she unveils an adventurousness, a journey it that the track’s dirge-like path might not suggest. “There it is,” she says, “my ‘Way’, curvy and unknown but mine to follow. I leap off on the first step.”