OK, members and ex members of IMMORTAL, OLD FUNERAL, DET HEDENSKE FOLK, ENSLAVED, MALIGNANT ETERNAL, AUDREY HORNE, SAHG, GORGOROTH, JOTUNSPOR and AMPUTATION. What a line-up! And IMMORTAL are not just represented by some obscure former member from the first two weeks, nope, this is Abbath and Demonaz was responsible for the lyrics! There’s been a lot of talk about I and it had been pretty confusing as to what exactly to expect, but “Between Two Worlds” disperses all confusion and doubts with one swipe of an icy glove right between your eyes!
Now how to describe the sound… Imagine a cross between newer IMMORTAL, BATHORY and a shot of MOTÖRHEAD and you get a rough idea of what to expect. What might now read a bit odd at first glance makes a lot more sense once you have heard the opening sounds of “The Storm I Ride”, which contains a mesmerizing riff over which Abbath puts his trademark snarl, which sounds a lot closer to MOTÖRHEAD’s Lemmy, though, as you can actually understand what he sings about, interesting twist! So we have placed the MOTÖRHEAD influence, how about the others? Well, IMMORTAL shine through everywhere, especially the riffing, which has this almost unique sound to it, which will almost automatically lure you into its spell, but you would not even dream of resisting, trust me!
The riffing is the maybe most important factor on “Between Two Worlds”, as it is relatively simple, but all the more effective, as most songs are built around one riff, which will fade away and then come back, but instead of seeming repetitive it adds to the at times almost hypnotic nature of these compositions, which gives this album such a unique atmosphere. And as last influence BATHORY’s epic grandeur is also evident on many of the songs, such as “Warriors”, “Days Of North Winds” and especially “Far Beyond The Quiet”, which is an incredible song, but also when they accelerate and give the rhythm a light marching feeling, as on “Batallions”, the music keeps this majestic feeling that combines Black, Heavy and even some Viking Metal in a masterful way.
It is hard to put this album into words, as it is virtually impossible to capture this majestic atmosphere of “Between Two Worlds”, just take my word for it that it is instantly recognizable and that there is no filling material in these 42 minutes! It becomes clear that Abbath and Demonaz would never have been able to bring as many Heavy Metal influences into the music of IMMORTAL, so branching out into I was an almost logical consequence. Now IMMORTAL are back as well, so with this duo having an outlet for their epic creativity, I expect the new IMMORTAL to be one hell of an icestorm…
(Online November 14, 2006)