Dennis : In 2009 drummer Stian Sannerud and guitarist Fredrik Bjerkø participated in a talent show and soon after the two Norwegians decided to form their band Tantara together with another guitarist and bassist. Three years later the band debuted with a fine debut album ‘Based on Evil’ that was released through Indie Recordings. Their style was heavily influenced by old school thrash metal bands such as Metallica, Megadeth, Exodus, Heathen and Testament, but the young band lacked a sound of their own.
Fast forward six years later and the band returns to the metal front with their second studio album ‘Sum of Forces’ on September 7, 2018. And right from the start of the album it becomes clear that Tantara has undergone quite a transition. Opener ‘Punish the Punisher’ for instance shows a more technical and aggressive band, and the length of their songs has been shortened, which makes them more compact and dynamic at the same time. I also get the feeling that these guys had a good look at other young thrash metal outfits such as Havok and Gama Bomb, with whom they played shows as well, and thus Tantara sounds a lot more modern nowadays then they did six years ago. I think a lot of people will not agree on Fredrik Bjerkø’s vocals, which are really something special. At first I thought I was listening to a female vocalist, then the vocals reminded me somewhat of Confessor but after giving the album a few spins I finally started getting used to his voice. Love ‘em of hate ‘em… Whereas the band kept the first five tracks relatively short for Tantara standards, they did not shy away from recording the ten minute plus instrumental song ‘White Noise’ as their album closer, and it is certainly a nod to Metallica who were masters of long instrumentals (and puppets) as well. With ‘Sum of Forces’ Tantara finally show their real face and make clear that they are a thrash metal band to be reckoned with!