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Enslaved - Isa CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.17 | 213 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
5 stars eeeeeessssAAAHHHH!!

Finally reviewing this album.. some dozens of listens and over a year of owning it. Okay why am i giving it an essential rating? Here is a brief rundown.

Accessibility. If there is a black metal album i'm quite certain anyone remotely interested in the genre could enjoy from the first run through its ISA. There are catchy licks abound. Melodic song structure that stays on the same idea just long enough to be fully enjoyed before something new and (also) catchy comes along. The 15% clean vocal parts are always memorable and at the right times.

Cohesiveness/Pacing. The album starts off with just enough semi-useless sounds to get you in the mood for a black metal onslaught (the sub 1 min intro: green lunar force) and in comes the fun.. you were not willing to wait long but regardless.. were waiting for. From then on it keeps up the pacing.. well.. perfectly. I can't fault it at all. Bands that stick to more of a formulaic genre like black metal can start to get boring for me if i hear the same blast-attack for too long with no dynamic or tempo change between a song or throughout the entire album for that matter. But not the case with ISA.. pacing is great.

Filler. Or lack there-of i should say. There is none here, seriously. None. Every note played has meaning and everything from every instrument is key. As a 10 year drummer i can say that the drumming.. which by the way is top-notch.. was definitely well thought out, just like everything i have heard and come to expect, by Enslaved. There is no 'showing off' in sight.. in fact hardly any fills at all. The drumming was definitely meant to supplement the composition of the song.. to be the bones of the structure and keep the band glued through all off kilt time signatures and the listener for that matter!

These are the main reasons why i give this album a masterpiece rating. notice i don't mention skill of the musicians, or lyrical content. etc. The reason? I expect these things to be fantastic.. this is progressive rock. Im more concerned about will i enjoy it the first few times i listen, and will i enjoy it months after owning it.

Yes and Yes with Isa. Masterpiece.

SoundsofSeasons | 5/5 |


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