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Axioma Ethica Odini
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Axioma Ethica Odini
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As odd as it may sound, there is not that much new here. Enslaved have been far beyond the leading edge of prog/black metal now for almost a decade. Each album has offered a mix of '70s progressive rock, bizarre Voivod riffing, black metal obliteration, etc. The same holds true on this release, just everything has been tightened up immeasurably.
Jens Bogren was brought in to mix the record. He is responsible for the skull-crushing sound that can be found on the latest albums by Opeth and Amon Amarth. Possibly the only current metal producer who gets a massive, professional sound, particularly crafted to each band, that doesn't sound compressed and brickwalled into the absurd noise found on so many major heavy releases.
The vocals have had particular attention paid to them this time. The ever-improving clean vocals have advanced markedly and Bogren gets an absolutely phenomenal sound from Grutle Kjellson's harsh vox, guttural bellows and shrieks; swirling around one another approaching the heights of Mikael Akerfeldt's genre-defining performance at the end of "Blackwater Park."
Enslaved have been guilty in the past of throwing whacked-out riffs together in a seemingly random fashion, having songs go on too long or randomly switching between clever parts at the most inappropriate moment. "AEO" finds the songwriting tighter and more succinct than it has been in ages, even though many of the tracks are around the seven minute mark.
And of last note, I feel as though the band have not performed with this much ease and confidence since "Mardraum" roughly a decade ago.Read more ›
This was the final in the string of four Enslaved albums to win Norway's Spellemannprisen (Spellemann Prize), the equivalent of the Grammy, for best metal album -- ISA/2005, RUUN/2006, VERTEBRAE/2008, and AXIOMA ETHICA ODINI/2010. The title (The Ethical Axiom of Odin in English) indicates the Norse spirituality that Enslaved have been exploring, and the booklet including all the lyrics is well worth reading -- sure you can just listen, but this is also music that has something to say.
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After their beginning as an early Norwegian black metal band, Enslaved began to innovate, pioneering with others what became known as viking metal, incorporating the music and themes of Norway's pre-Christian heritage into a morphing black metal framework.
With BELOW THE LIGHTS (2003) they arrived at the pinnacle of their progressive evolution. It is a hard-hitting metal album, but throughout are found progressive elements -- synthesizer, acoustic guitar, and Viking chanting -- that make it unique and visionary.Read more ›
None of this should surprise Enslaved fans, but I have to say that the band has exceeded my expectations with this album. I never doubted this mighty horde, but didn't know if this record would be a masterpiece. Based upon this aural argument, one would do well to take ethical cues from the great Mr. Odin. This is a serious contender for my favorite album of 2010.
As someone who has followed the "underground" for over a decade now (still a youngin', I know) I have to say this is the most compelling album I've heard from this legendary band. This album did not leave rotation in my vehicle for about a month. That amounted to at least a dozen plays, and you know what? It never got tiring. Not once. The only reason I swapped it out for something else was because I am very much backlogged on my music listening. Still, considering the average playtime an album gets from me before I move on, this greatly exceeded that by several multiples.
If you have any love for Metal, for progressive music, for any music which is innovative and entirely original, which is superbly crafted, please check out this album. I recommend this to you only for your own benefit. No, screw that. I recommend this album because humanity is on the brink of disappearing into a pit of it's own s*** and this band is one of the few remaining reasons it shouldn't be allowed to do so.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Never really cared for or even liked Enslaved kept on reading about this band being this Godly Viking Metal Band from Valhalla but when I started to listen to their albums such as... Read morePublished on May 23, 2014 by Warren
The first two songs are Norwegian metal classics, as is the seventh song. AEO proves that Enslaved are only getting better over time and it strengthens their already impressive... Read morePublished on April 5, 2014 by whr27
There is not a single song that I could nominate to be removed from this album. Even their instrumental songs are awesome. Read morePublished on February 4, 2013 by Jose R. Roman
This is my first album from the band Enslaved. I saw them open for Opeth over a year ago and was impressed. Read morePublished on September 24, 2011 by DW
I'm extraordinarily picky about my music. Not in an idiotic, doesn't-know-crap-about-time-signatures hipster sort of way, but seriously. This album is great.Published on August 7, 2011 by Dustin
This is one of the few albums in years that i could listen without changing a song (thats an hour long). Read morePublished on May 24, 2011 by I. Cortazzo
this is their masterpiece. i will always love FROST the most, but this is their masterpiece. their is so much going on with this album it demands at least 3 listens before you can... Read morePublished on November 16, 2010 by Andrew M. Winrich
excellent new album. Viking metal fans will not be disappointed by newest release by Enslaved. Progressive elements seem even smoother on axioma than vertebrae and vertebrae was a... Read morePublished on November 3, 2010 by nickpick
Enslaved keep the intricacy and subtleties of their last three albums yet bring the rock, and I like it. Read morePublished on October 15, 2010 by Chet Fakir