Shining (NO)

Ketha – #​!​%​16​.​7 Review

Ketha – #​!​%​16​.​7 Review

“Earlier this year, a band hailing somehow not from Japan, but from Kraków, released an appropriately enigmatically-named EP that by all rights should have shat all over Angra‘s RoTM position, had anybody on the planet told us about it. But they didn’t. And for that you’ll burn.” We are aggrieved.

Ihsahn – Eremita Review

Ihsahn – Eremita Review

Post-Emporer, Ihsahn has kicked a lot of ass, but After was a controversial record without a doubt. While I gave it my thumbs up at the time, I feel like it hasn’t aged well—with the saxophone performance being my biggest complaint. Sure, jazz and metal have histories of solo players who push the boundaries of what is “acceptable,” but the saxophone performances get pretty taxing after a while. So for me, the thing that I’m looking for from a new Ihsahn record is that it lives up to the songwriting and groove-oriented riffing from The Adversary and especially angL which is one of my favorite records of the last 10 years. So, as you can guess, I approached Eremita (Latin for “hermit” and the root of the English word “eremite” if you weren’t aware) nervously.

Ihsahn – After Review

Ihsahn – After Review

Easily one of the most anticipated records of 2010 for me has been Ihsahn’s new offering. While I was a passing Emperor fan, really just a fan of In the Nightside Eclipse and Anthems to the Welkin at Dusk-era, I was taken by Ihsahn’s solo stuff. The Adversary felt fresh, progressive enough, a step away from the later Emperor material of which I wasn’t a fan, and it captured the sonic styles and textures that he was never quite allowed to explore while in Emperor. The record didn’t stick with me as I had hoped, while I listened to it occasionally it didn’t hold a steadfast position in my discography. On the other hand, angL blew me away. Probably the finest record of 2008, angL has maintained a steady place in the rotation and is a record that I’ve showed to dozens of people. Perfectly produced, perfectly composed and smartly written, angL contained everything that I wanted out of a new progressive metal record. So, of course, when I heard that Ihsahn would be releasing a new record in 2010, I became justifiably excited.