Hagalaz Runedance – Frigga’s web

Frigga’s Web is the third full-length album of Hagalaz Runedance, which again manages to convince with its ritual, spiritual folk music. For those not so familiar with this spiritual project around Andrea Haugen, I will cite from the introduction in the booklet: “I explore the spirituality of ancient northern Europe, searching for the forgotten wisdom and values of my Pagan ancestors, who understood the mysteries of Mother Nature. (…) Hagalaz Runedance is particularly focused on the feminine mysteries of the North, and the strong position women held in Pagan cultures.” The cover is illustrative for this last point, we see a self-conscious Andrea Haugen, standing with a sword in her hands, in front of a sea. If you would want to know more about northern mythologie, you could read Andrea Haugen’s book “The ancient fires of Midgard”.

Important themes on Frigga’s Web are “the web of life, the mysteries of birth, death, the afterlife; the goddesses Hel and Frigga and their relation. But also personal happenings in the last couple of years”. The album is dedicated to Andreas Hove, a musician who played on the previous “Volven” album and who died of cancer in 2000. Furthermore the song “The soul of a hound” is dedicated to Arcane, Andrea’s dog who passed away after keeping her company for 12 years.

It has become a typical Hagalaz album. A combination of folk and traditional music, which gets a ritual, trance-like character through the percussion and the conjuring voice of Andrea. Many additional instruments are used, like harp, lute, lyre and bagpipes. It is a varied album with both energetic songs to dance to and more tranquil tracks. The first song, ‘The crossing’, directly impresses with the sea sounds in the background. The two following tracks are highlights, both ‘Hel Goddess of the underworld’ and ‘Frigga’s web’ are nice energetic songs to move to. This new Hagalaz album is a nice spiritual journey…