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(19 Reviews)

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  • I’m only familiar with a few of the Norwegian black metal bands, and decided to try out Enslaved after reading some good reviews. I’m quite surprised and intrigued by the creativity in this band’s sound, and they’ve gotta be one of the most progressive and interesting bands in their dark circle. I bet if the most adventurous and big-thinking Vikings had access to modern instruments, as well as a yen for both classic extreme metal and prog rock, they’d make music like this. As opposed to the relentless violence of their compatriots, Enslaved enslave the listener with an ominous creeping dread and slow-burning menace. The most powerful tracks on this album, such as “Entroper” and “Tides of Chaos,” build that power with shifting dynamics and unexpected stylistic changes, while the haunting acoustic breaks in “Path to Vanir” and “RUUN” find the perfect balance between beauty and power. Now that’s how to build true heaviness, rather than just bashing away at full blast all the time. Prominent keyboards and some snippets of exotic instrumentation, as well as the interesting juxtaposition between the Alice Cooper-like sneer of Grutle Kjellson and the forlorn wizened singing of Herbrand Larsen, are all signs of a band that is fully committed to breaking out of its category, and moving that category into new musical realms. This extreme metal is extremely fascinating. [~doomsdayer520~]

    Posted on November 10, 2009