Sunday, July 29, 2018

Immortal-Northern Chaos Gods (review by MMB)

Immortal's 2018 album Northern Chaos Gods is an effort to convince the listener through the power of speed and fast songs. It is also an attempt to fulfill the expectations of the audience by cutting and pasting pieces from the previous albums in a considered formula. It has lots of bits and pieces of the previous albums. Those that want fast songs and are completely pleased with fast songs in and of themselves will have very little about which to complain. The Immortal businessmen thought about how to make sure that Immortal sounds like Immortal, how to deliver a good product.
The album's strength lies in the adept recycling of riffs. The continuation of Immortal's brand name is on the line with the album. The product is made to please, to make people bang their heads. The riffs, the imagery, the lyrics, it's all there. The album is made to impress on a first, hungry listen.
However, the downfall of the album is the lack of epic melody. After repeated listens, once the mind gets past the speed and the formula, and it's time to get to the nitty gritty and find out whether the album has the magical ingredient that will make it survive the killing floor of elimination and deletion, it is incapable of surviving the merciless guillotine. The guitar soloing is pitiful. It offers very little. Actually, it is practically non-existent. The last song is supposed to be the epic finale but, incredibly, there is no guitar solo in this nine-minute song. The song itself is alright, but it is artificially long for the sake of appearing epic. It is made long by simply repeating the verses and parts that were already heard before, earlier in the song. If there is no soloing, what about some black metal melodic guitar progressions? No, it's just not there.
Purchase if speed is a must, and perhaps the only necessity.
Listen carefully to find out for yourself if you are looking for the big melodies because I submit that they are not there.

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