After three years since his previous release “Das Seelenbrechen” and though this record was ready for release for some quite time, IHSAHN finally returns this year, with his sixth record entitled “Arktis”. Did he manage to get himself into another miracle? Let’s find out!
First of all, I have to admit that “Arktis” is far from the experimentation that went on into his latest works. This is a more to the roots effort, closer to his black metal roots and his first three solo releases. You get to have songs that sound as follow ups to songs from “After”, “AngL” or “The Adversary” with a short of more free of charge sense.
The record goes on smoothly and predictively simple for the first three songs, until you get on track “South Winds” which is something quite new as an approach. With a synth bass beat leading the whole song and actually giving new colours to IHSAHN’s music palette. “In the Vaults” which follows, is one of the strongest songs ever released by this artist, in my opinion. While “Until I too Dissolve” splits the release into two halves. Having an 80s Van Halen-ish hard rock riff driving it all the way through, it still remains a great question mark as a composition, because it combines the IHSAHN style with this 80s refrain out of nowhere. Genius! “Pressure”, sounds closer to EMPEROR’s latest releases with its blasts and breaks. Great song too! Later on “Crooked Red Line” the jazzy experimentations including the sax sounds of Jørgen Munkeby, elevate the whole record to another standard, leading towards the tower song of “Celestial Violence”, where the blackness of music builds huge around the listener.
“Arktis” can have only one sub-name; genius! This is IHSAHN’s greatest effort since 2010’s “After” and probably as ground breaking. Don’t miss this! One of the top records for this year, for sure! Enjoy responsibly!
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