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Isildurs Bane - Mind - Vol 2 Live CD (album) cover


Isildurs Bane


Symphonic Prog

3.79 | 36 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
4 stars ISILDURS BANE are a band that i've had a hard time getting into simply because i've found their music to be too Classical sounding. So going into this double live album with over 153 minutes of music on it, lets just say I wasn't too enthusiastic at the prospect of having to give this the 5-7 listens needed before my review. Well it only took one listen for me to understand why this is regarded as their best recording,and it grew on me from there. While it is a live album, the band calls it a concept record and have done plenty of manipulation in the studio to get this to sound the way they want it to. And yes it sounds amazing.This is a recording that keeps my interest throughout. It has some variety on it and I like the way they input spoken word samples as well as sampled converstions and at one point it's like we're in the middle of some party. Also parts of this sound like an ECM recording. Classy and atmospheric with laid back horns. Sure there is that Classical element still but there's also some fairly heavy Rock passages intigrated with the guitar, bass and drums kicking ass.This has been such a big and pleasant surprise and given me a real appreciation for how talented these guys are, especially Mats Johansson the keyboardist and composer.The liner notes that come with this are thick and packed full of pictures and a description of each composition and more.This is truly a must have for fans of this band.There is a six part piece called "Extroversion" that is spread throughout this double album giving it some unity.

"Extroversion (Phase 1)" sounds interesting to get us started and it blends into "Opportunistic Medicine" where a beat with guitar and atmosphere takes over. It turns heavy before 3 minutes. Nice. Some excellent drum work follows then it's the guitars turn with vibes and prominant bass. It's heavy again to end it. "Chevel" is an over 19 minute piece divided into 4 songs. Drums pound as keys and atmosphere help out. Guitar 1 1/2 minutes in rips it up. Orchestral music comes in then a calm followed by children's laughter. Intricate percussion then the guitar plays tastefully.The guitar isn't so tasteful 5 minutes in. Haha. Sampled French spoken words as other spoken words come and go as the original speaker continues. Cool section. Percussion joins in.The suite ends in a laid back manner. "Extroversion (Phase 2)" features a sampled conversation with lots of activity going on in the background. "Exit Permit" is 23 1/2 minutes long.You can hear a plane fly over a couple of times then the violins start to slice it up. It kicks in with drums after 1 1/2 minutes. It settles as piano takes over then kicks in again with horns this time. A heavy beat and chunky bass 9 1/2 minutes in.The tempo and mood continue to change.

"La Ruche" is mellow with violin, flute, vibes and piano all helping out. "Holy Fools" is dark to start with spoken words. Some heaviness follows. It stops and changes before 4 1/2 minutes. Great section here with the bass, guitar and organ."Extroversion (Phase 3)" is another great piece with that atmosphere along with gutar and bass.

"Extroversion (Phase 4)" opens disc two with samples and sounds. "The Flight Onward" kicks in with drums and guitar. Killer sound here. It settles after 2 1/2 minutes then settles even more after 4 minutes. It kicks back in though and drums dominate late. "Celestial Vessel" is the almost 24 minutes 7 part suite that really blows me away. It's spacey, atmospheric, experimental and heavy as it takes us through a journey in our minds. "Unity" is a beautiful tune that kicks in fuller before 3 minutes. "The Pilot" changes tempos quite often and we get some excellent guitar. "Das Junkerhaus" is slow moving with atmosphere and does turn aggressive around 4 1/2 minutes. "Extroversion (Phase 5)" is spacey with atmosphere.

"The Voyage" is over 16 minutes long and it is like a trip. "Exit Visa" is led by strings and horns. Impressive.The guitar, bass and drums take over before 3 minutes and they sound great.The orchestration returns though. "Extroversion (Phase 6)" ends the album with sparse piano and sounds in this melancholic conclusion.

For fans of adventerous music, others should stay clear of Mind Volume 2.

Mellotron Storm | 4/5 |


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