Label: Peaceville Records
Whoever wonders why should we care for an Isengard new record that features a bunch of old, dusted material -without a certain musical direction-, in 2021 (the album was out in October 2020, but I have it in my property only one month) please tell us a reason why we shouldn’t give a closer look to a brilliant release that encloses raw, stubborn Heavy Metal enriched with eerie riffs, haunting passages, early doom parts close enough to Sabbath, Pentagram (“Slash At The Sun”, “The Flight”) and Trouble (“Floating With The Ancient Tide”, “The Light”) and it’s actually a unique record , serving/creating a genre of its own, with rough (probably a 4 channel that old school fans ears will adore) analog sound (according to Fenriz it was recorded in the “Sorkness brothers’ porta studio”, the later known as “Necrohell” studio),as the album’s songs were recorded in that blends Speed metal in the veins of Agent Steel onslaught touches [“Dragon Fly (Proceed upon the Journey”] with US Power (“A Shape In The Dark”) and Acid Rock, while Folk Black metal elements in the veins of Master’s Hammer or/and Root is mixed with the ferocity of Celtic Frost and the pure metal influences of Cirith Ungol, Manilla Road and Brocas Helm (“Ride the Solar Wind”). Oh and punk/hardcore choruses too where needed (“Rockemillion”)! “Vårjevndøgn” -that is the Norwegian word for Spring Equinox-, was recorded back in 1989-1993 era, but only now is out via Peaceville Records. Probably this material would never see the light of day if Fenriz haven’t gained this remarkable status he has among heavy metal fans all of these years. Still this overlooked or even totally forgotten material is the absolute tribute to late 70’s/early 80’s Heavy music. But mostly is totally awesome, as beyond the cult aura and the album’s miscellaneous influences, the song-writing is top notch. After all as “Vårjevndøgn” nature is mixed and diverse, without the excellent song -writing the final result would be a disaster. 2016’s entitled “Traditional Doom Cult” 7” single was a warning for those that had forgotten Isengard. “The Fright” and “The Light” are the two songs that were originally introduced to us in “Traditional Doom Cult” are also available in “Vårjevndøgn”. Of course the audience that appeals to isn’t the masses. Nor the “elite” if this word can be used for Heavy Metal; a genre that responds to the lower classes of society. If you are into Keep It True Festival motive or your discotheque is dominated by obscure albums, hidden treasures or cult sounds of the ‘80s you must buy this album (that could easily be counted in terms of duration as an EP too) yesterday.