If it were possible to separate Amon Amarth from its Viking-obsessed lyrics, the Swedish quintet would still boast one of the fiercest and smartest battle plans in metal today. The music decisively burns away any hint of cheesiness those skeptical of “Viking metal” might expect, leaving only a heap of terrifying Norse musical muscle. Epic, melodic riffs stretch like a second skin across Fredrik Andersson’s impeccable death-metal drums, as frontman Johan Hegg roars tales of gods and warriors. (Don’t be surprised if the live show includes an actual Viking ship’s prow bisecting the stage, or the occasional swordfight re-enactment. Yes, really.) Up through the new Surtur Rising, Amon Amarth keeps getting better and better results from its mix of cultish brutality and tremendously catchy songwriting.