IMMORTAL — At the Heart of Winter (review)

IMMORTAL — At the Heart of Winter album cover Album · 1999 · Black Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
5/5 ·
666sharon666
The fifth Immortal album At the Heart of Winter marks a few changes to the band, especially when put up against the previous album Blizzard Beasts. Because of his problems with RSI guitarist Demonaz was forced to take a back seat with the band from this point onwards, with Abbath taking over the guitarist role. On At the Heart of Winter he still retains his bassist role as well, while the drums are still handled by Horgh. As usual though Demonaz still wrote all the lyrics.

Musically though this is also a very different band to that which recorded Blizzard Beasts and also the rawer sounding first three albums, which are all very much staples of a pure black metal sound. Where Blizzard Beasts toyed with death metal At the Heart of Winter introduced some thrash metal elements to the Immortal sound. The songs are much longer than on past Immortal albums as well, which has resulted in a more substantial running time and overall the record is better produced. The end result is what I consider the band's crowning achievement and tracks like Withstand the Fall of Time and the title track are fine favourites. I do enjoy Blizzard Beasts more than some fans seem to but I have to say that At the Heart of Winter is like a new lease of life for the Norwegians; a massive jump in quality and a record that they'll spend the rest of their career trying to match.

Attribution: http://metaltube.freeforums.org/immortal-at-the-heart-of-winter-t3700.html
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adg211288 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
I'm probably due to give Emperor another go sometime, to be honest. I wouldn't say I even know the music on the two CD's I have well.
666sharon666 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
It is actually. I just don't seem to remember it as fondly as Nightside. Solid album though, from what I remember of it. I have to confess that it's been a while since I listened to any Emperor. My opinions could well have changed by the time I play their stuff again. That actually happened with several of Immortal's albums when I was relistening to them to write my reviews.
more than 2 years ago
I thought everyone loved Anthems' as well. Isn't that some sort of classic too?
666sharon666 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
I had a time when I listened to Emperor a lot but now I'd say it's only In the Nightside Eclipse that I'd consider essential from them.
adg211288 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
I could never get into Emperor that much myself. I do enjoythem but they're not a favourite by any stretch of the imagination. I have Prometheus - The Discipline of Fire & Demise and the Emperor / Wrath of the Tyrant compilation, but both were second hand purchases that I got just because they were cheap. I prefer Ihsahn as a solo artist, really. In the Nightside Eclipse is undeniably a landmark album though. I've just never felt inclined to go buy it.
more than 2 years ago
I think I'm going to have to dig this out again and give it a listen. I've been listening to Emperor again for the first time in years... and Immortal were always more user-friendly than Emperor anyway.
666sharon666 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
A few years ago I listened to a lot more black metal than I do now. But Immortal was always the best black metal band for me and the one I return to the most often.
adg211288 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
They were one of the first black metal bands I discovered and they're still definitely a favourite, thanks in no small part to this album. Should really listen to it more often.
more than 2 years ago
I don't listen to much Black Metal, but this is undeniably a top-notch album.

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