Immortal will be here forever.
Formed in 1991 in Norway, the band is one of this Old School style’s legends. In 2023, and after many breaks, Demonasz (guitar/bass/vocals), accompanied by Ice Dale (bass, Audrey Horne, Enslaved) and Kevin Kvåle (drums, Gaahls Wyrd, Horizon Ablaze) announced the release of War Against All, their tenth album.
From War Against All, the title chosen to introduce the album and unveil it to the public, we notice that raw power is always present. We have all the Old School riffs’ coldness, raw screams and the permanent aggressive approach of uncompromising Black Metal, then the sound cleanly cuts to make room for Thunders Of Darkness and its heady melodies. The band injects a bit of blistering Thrash into its jerky and catchy rhythm, and then Wargod offers us a real warlike march punctuated by federating strikes. Melodies also take a more important place while remaining very dark, but the clean-sounding break also reveals us a softer approach before furiously coming back with No Sun, a very heavy track which will undoubtedly please the band’s early fans. The balance between massive and dissonant harmonic parts is perfectly managed, as well as the much more melodic and airy approach of Return To Cold, the next composition, which adopts heady parts again. Old School roots are intact on this track, which reminds again of a distant era and its martial sounds, then clean sound appears again to introduce Nordlandihr, the album’s longest track, which skillfully builds a contrast between solid riffs and melancholic tones thanks to its heady instrumental. Melodies speak for themselves without vocals on this continuously solid rhythmic, but screams will come back with Immortal, a track anchored in the band’s roots while proving to be very symbolic. Whether lyrics obviously remain focused on this impressive approach, « I am Immortal » takes all its sense when you know the band’s history, which closes this album with Blashyrkh My Throne, an ultimate composition reviving the Norwegians’ most melodic influences while remaining icy, continuing to build the legend of the band’s beloved Blashyrkh.
Immortal lives up to its name with a rare excellence. Although the band has suffered many hard knocks, Immortal has never stopped wanting to live, and War Against All perfectly symbolizes the dark rage burning under Black Metal’s banner.