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Isa [Vinyl]

4.6 out of 5 stars 22 customer reviews

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Product Details

  • Vinyl (January 1, 2015)
  • Original Release Date: January 1, 2015
  • Number of Discs: 2
  • Label: BACK ON BLACK
  • ASIN: B002959M3A
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #441,066 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
ENSLAVED - Isa

-

Continuing in the steps of `Below the Lights', Enslaved return with another progressive, black-metal masterpiece. Seldom do I do play by play of the tracks, but this album more then deserves and accurate description.

After the opening intro the album launches into Lunar Force, a song with trance-inducing guitar riffs, precise drumming and subtle piano with tortured screams adding the sense of urgency... The song gracefully progresses to the five minute mark then is followed by about 40 seconds of eerie synth feedback, then slams aggressively back into the opening riff then fades out with some beautiful piano patterns.

The title track, Isa has a similar hypnotic guitar pattern, yet this time blending the screams with some clean channel vocals... A very passionate track for being a little over 3:30.

Ascension opens with some odd ambience and by the 1:15 mark sounds like King Crimson has gone Black Metal. (I believe I even heard some tambourine...) Singing is strong in this track, sounding at times almost like Mike Patton from the darker FNM days.

Bounded by Allegiance opens brilliantly with organ, chugging guitars, and building drum beat. The 2 minute intro flows into a subtle softer part before unleashing some older influenced melodic, black metal. This song continually progresses with lots of variations (Both faster and slower) throughout this track and even throws a classic prog guitar solo to close out this track.

Violent Dawning is a furious track, likely the most consistently fast track on the album. It showcases some really nice drum work, both kickers and his symbol work. Also for being such an aggressive track they do not forget the dark melodic beauty...
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Format: Audio CD
Enslaved has truly done it again. There are influences here from nearly every style of metal (read: Metal, not the s**t on the radio) in history, and plenty of innovation and technical mastery to propel this album into history.

--DISCLAIMER--

The "tr00" and "kvlt" crowd is going to hate this. But then again, Isa is not for you - go listen to Det Som Engang Var, on repeat, for the rest of your life, since that's exactly what all the cookie-cutter "kvlt" bands are trying to sound like anyway.

--END DISCLAIMER--

For people who are ready to step out of 1994, Enslaved has crafted here for you an epic slab of forward-thinking metal that holds to its roots yet reaches out in several different directions, all without ever feeling stale or sacrificing their trademark songwriting excellence.

Just make sure you give it several listens before you try to sort it out in your head - it may sound a little more accessible than their prior work, but it's also more complex than any of their albums to date.
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Format: Audio CD
Ah, the new Enslaved album is finally here and was well worth the wait! All I have to say about this album is that Enslaved have furthered their progressive take on black metal, adding yet even more melody and clean vocals and creating near perfection. It's really quite amazing how Enslaved have evolved throughout the years, starting their career with a split with the legendary Emperor and now this...and they still have yet to dissapoint. I have a feeling this will be one of my top 10 album picks of 2005 at the end of the year. Cheers.
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Format: Audio CD Verified Purchase
ISA is a superb continuation of the sound realized on BELOW THE LIGHTS (2003). It takes the progressive elements even further, moving from metal songs with progressive embellishments to a thoroughly progressive suite. Unlike BTL, ISA includes the lyrics, and the pre-Christian spiritual theme becomes very clear, with titles like "Green Reflection," "Lunar Force," Ascension," and "Return to Yggdrasill." The peak of the album's arc is reached on the powerful and amazing instrumental "Secrets of the Flesh."

This was the first 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. I suspect that beyond the obviously superior music, the development of the Norwegian traditional spirituality theme played a significant role in the band's recognition.

*** *** ***

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.

By that time two original members carried on -- charismatic frontman, harsh vocalist, lyricist, and bass player Grutle Kjellson, and guitarist, keyboardist, and main songwriter Ivar Bjornson, whose writing is done under his given name of Peersen. They were joined on lead guitar by Arve Isdal, known as Ice Dale. On ISA they were joined by Cato Bekkevold on drums and Herbrand Larsen on keyboards.
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