Power of Metal.dk Review

Style: Extreme Progressive Metal
Release date: 16 June, 2012
Playing time: 54:14

I have to tell I did not wait to get these nine mp3 files to confirm the total confidence I have in Ihsahn’s music. I sent an order days ago for the new Prong, Arjen Anthony Lucassen, Paradise Lost, Adrenaline Mob and a pre-order for Kreator and Eremita’s deluxe digibook edition.

I mean: why wait? First, I really like Emperor’s discography, especially "Prometheus - The Discipline of Fire and Demise", wholly composed by Ihsahn, and the perfect link with his solo masterpieces “The Adversary”, “angL” and “After”. Ihsahn has also this capacity to touch many different styles, to tame them and create his own Frankenstein creature, in the Vegard Sverre Tveitan’s way. I am not forgetting his various contributions and guest works, lately on Jeff Loomis “Plains of Oblivion”.

Jeff Loomis is also guest on “Eremita”, as Devin Townsend, Ihsahn’s wife Heidi/Ihriel, Leprous’ friends Tobias Ørnes Andersen and Einar Solberg. Last but not the least, the saxofonist Jørgen Munkeby is back… from “The Grave” and here and there on “Eremita”, bringing some great music colors as he did on “After”.

Am I just another blind and deaf worshipper? Let’s see what we have here: progressive black metal; lyrical metal in “Arrival” (nice work, Einar); heavy, oppressive pieces; killing riffs you can bang your head on. The melodies are omnipresent: you can close your eyes to enjoy each note, break, solo, arpeggio, variation… For the lost souls who find too much work and perfectionism here, they can listen to “Grief”, almost as bald as the piano theme in “Eyes Wide Shut”...

Ihsahn’s art crushes and charms at the same time. When depression and harmony are united: a kind of sadomasochism...

If you like Ihsahn’s previous recordings, no need to tell you to rush on “Eremita”. If you don’t, give a try anyway: you may see the dark light. If Ihsahn is unknown for you, give a real try too, then say thank you to him, the musicians around him, his record company and your humble reviewer. If you ignore this new masterpiece on purpose, I will leave you to your mediocrity (trying to forget my own one…) with a thundering sardonic laugh!

01. Arrival
02. The Paranoid
03. Introspection
04. The Eagle and the Snake
05. Catharsis
06. Something Out There
07. Grief
08. The Grave
09. Departure
10. Recollection (deluxe edition only)
Label: Candlelight Records
Distribution: Plastic Head
Reviewed by: Philippe Leconte
Date: 10 June, 2012
Website: www.ihsahn.com