PORTRAIT
Traditional heavy metal • Sweden

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Portrait are a Swedish heavy metal band from Kristianstad. They formed in 2004 and released their self-titled debut full-length studio album in 2008.
Thanks to Time Signature for the addition and UMUR for the updates

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Burn The WorldBurn The World
Metal Blade 2017
Audio CD$13.98
CrossroadsCrossroads
Metal Blade 2014
Audio CD$10.83
Crimen Laesae Majestatis DivinaeCrimen Laesae Majestatis Divinae
Metal Blade 2011
Audio CD$8.50
$8.54 (used)
PortraitPortrait
Capitol Records 1992
Audio CD$34.01
$1.00 (used)
All That MattersAll That Matters
Import
Capitol 1995
Audio CD$9.74
$0.98 (used)
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PORTRAIT Discography

PORTRAIT albums / top albums

.. Album Cover 3.76 | 3 ratings
Portrait
Traditional heavy metal 2008
.. Album Cover 3.78 | 3 ratings
Crimen Laesae Majestatis Divinae
Traditional heavy metal 2011
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Crossroads
Traditional heavy metal 2014

PORTRAIT EPs & splits

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Under Command
Traditional heavy metal 2014

PORTRAIT live albums

PORTRAIT demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Welcome to My Funeral
Traditional heavy metal 2006
.. Album Cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
We Were Not Alone
Traditional heavy metal 2014

PORTRAIT re-issues & compilations

PORTRAIT singles (2)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Into the Nothingness
Traditional heavy metal 2007
.. Album Cover
4.50 | 1 ratings
The Murder of All Things Righteous
Traditional heavy metal 2010

PORTRAIT movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

PORTRAIT Reviews

PORTRAIT Crimen Laesae Majestatis Divinae

Album · 2011 · Traditional heavy metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
UMUR
"Crimen Laesae Majestatis Divinae" is the 2nd full-length studio album by Swedish heavy metal act Portrait. The album was released through Metal Blade Records in May 2011. Since the release of their 2008 self-titled debut album, Per Karlsson has replaced Phillip Svennefelt as the band´s new lead vocalist.

Phillip Svennefelt was close to being King Diamond incarnate, and as a consequence the band´s debut album was more or less a Mercyful Fate worship album, but Per Karlsson is a less King Diamond worshipping lead vocalist. I say less though, because there are still clear references to Mercyful Fate/King Diamond in both the vocal department and in the instrumental parts of the music. So this is still what I would characterize as a worship album.

The atmosphere reeks occultism and horror and the band play powerful and energetic traditional heavy metal with both raw riffing and melodic leads and themes. Per Karlsson is a skilled vocalist and his vocal style is varied and powerful. The rest of the band are well playing too. The material is generally well composed and overall "Crimen Laesae Majestatis Divinae" is a pretty strong album. That feeling is only further enhanced by the suitingly raw and powerful sound production. If you can live with the clone factor or maybe even look for acts that sound like Mercyful Fate, I can highly recommend a purchase. If you look for something a little more original sounding, look somewhere else. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

PORTRAIT Portrait

Album · 2008 · Traditional heavy metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
UMUR
"Portrait" is the self-titled debut full-length studio album by Swedish heavy metal act Portrait. The album was released through Iron Kodex Records in April 2008. The original release was on CD, but the album has subsequently been released on cassette tape and vinyl too.

The music on the album is traditional heavy metal with a high pitched lead vocalist in front. Quite frankly this is one of the most blatant Mercyful Fate ripp-offs I´ve ever heard. Similar artists like Germany´s Attic and India´s Albatross, who are also strongly influenced by Mercyful Fate/King Diamond are not even close to the clone status of Portrait. The music features the right occult atmosphere (and songtitles like "Bow Unto the Devil" and "Beware the Demons"), the organic playing, the raw and unpolished sound production, raw and harmonic/melodic riffing, and of course an almost perfect impersonation of King Diamond in the vocal department.

This one is in other words an ocean divider. Some people will probably be completely turned off because of the clone factor, while others will find it somewhat charming. One thing is certain and that is that Portrait do one hell of a good job on this album. Clone factor or not, they are still a very well playing band with some pretty good songwriting skills. If you ask me the sound production leaves a bit to be desired, but if you like them raw and unpolished this one applies. There´s great energy in the music and tracks like "Hell" and "The Adversary" are also relatively hook laden. While the tracks are generally well written it is in the "hooks" department that the band can still improve their songwriting though.

Overall "Portrait" is a pretty good album, and while I can´t help recommend the band that they work on a more personal style in the future, I still find this album quite enjoyable as it is. A 3 - 3.5 star (65%) rating is deserved.

PORTRAIT Crimen Laesae Majestatis Divinae

Album · 2011 · Traditional heavy metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Time Signature
Beast of metal...

Genre: traditional heavy metal

Portrait is another one of those Swedish retro metal bands, and portrait are very good at what they do. It seems to me that, while a lot of retro metal bands go back to the New Wave of British Heavy Metal, Portrait are more inspired by the legends in Mercyful Fate - even to the point that their vocalist Per Karlsson emulates King Diamond's singing techniques, but without being a rip-off. Karlsson is an excellent singer, and he has his own sound.

In addition to the king Diamond influences, Portrait also appear to drawn on 80s power metal and speed metal. There are a couple of neoclassical guitar patterns to be heard, and some tracks are played at early speed metal tempo.

While inheriting stylistic traits from Mercyful Fate, Portrait strike me as being less progressive than Mercyful Fate in the sense that Portrait have not adopted Mercyful Fate's complete disregard for traditional song structures, which means that the verse-chorus configuration appears on this album - not that that's a problem really.

Production-wise, Portrait manage to emulate a mid 80s sound, which is both good and bad. The good thing is that the sound is less polished than what we may be used to nowadays. The bad thing, to me, is that a lot of metal releases back then were drowned in reverb, and that also applies to this release.

Still, I think that this release is very good, and Portrait succeed in bringing back to life the weird and wonderful character of traditional 80s metal.

PORTRAIT The Murder of All Things Righteous

Single · 2010 · Traditional heavy metal
Cover art Buy this album from MMA partners
Time Signature
Son of all metal...

Genre: traditional heavy metal

The two songs on this EP by Swedish Portrait are actually quite good, I think. We are dealing with good old traditional heavy metal. The two tracks draw - and this is probably a conscious move by the band - on recognizable elements from 70s and 90s metal.

The title track, for instance, contains elements that remind me of Mercyful Fate (mainly the vocals), Iron Maiden (the use of galloping guitars and twin leads) and AC/DC (the use of boogie rock riffage as part of the bridge) as well as many other recognizable metal elements. And I must say, it works brilliantly.

The other track, "Son of All Graves" is more of a power metal-inspired affair which also contains references to Mercyful Fate and some King Diamond-esque riffage, too.

The two tracks are brilliant, and this EP is recommended to anyone who likes good ole solid heavy metal.

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