Thursday, November 6, 2008

Isole - Bliss of Solitude (2008)

For their third album, the Swedes have delivered a slab of epic and graceful doom metal, with a concrete production and an overdose of calculated sorrow.

"By Blood" rages as a sad, steady pace beneath haunted vocals, before giving way to a spooky, Sabbath-like segment midway through. "From Clouded Sky" is like a ray of sunlight crashing your day and announcing to the wide world THIS MAN'S DAY HAS COME. You are fucked! Then it kicks into that insanely crunchy groove which would do any Candlemass or Solitude Aeternus fan proud. Might be my favorite here, but it's a tough contest. "Imprisoned in Solitude" begins with some light acoustics, before clouting you with a graceful flow of sad chords. The title track crushes you with the weight of a thousand dying suns, YOU ARE TRULY ALONE in an empty universe. "Aska" returns to the heavy as fuck Swedish doom grooves, "Dying" is another slower piece fueled by acoustic plucking. The album ends with the glorious "Shadowstone".

Here is a band which understands what 'doom' means. A psychological, stunning effect on the listener which evokes futility and sorrow. I hear so many bands out there who equate 'doom' with being boring, talentless hacks playing dreadfully slow riffs. Not Isole. Their material is melodic and beautiful, captivating yet crushing. They literally ooze despair and I took a dip and got really wet in it. Congratulations on your best album yet sirs.

Verdict: Win [8/10] (these filthy curtains)

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