|Review: Isole - Dystopia|
Label: Hammerheart Records
Year released: 2019
Genre: Doom Metal
Review online: October 12, 2019
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Rated 2.82/5 (56.36%) (11 Votes)
Isole's output over the years has been, shall we say, uneven. Their sophomore album, the superlative Throne of Void, still stands as a Doom milestone, and they have produced some really good albums, like Bliss of Solitude and Born from Shadows, while albums like Silent Ruins and The Calm Hunter have been less exciting. Still, I always have to give them credit for trying new things. They could have just sat back and cranked out standard Swedish Doom and ridden that wave, but they are always restlessly pushing their sound.
This one, again, sees them getting strongly back to their roots, welding more progressive song structures to their Doom base, built around melodic, heavy riffs and Daniel Bryntse's strong, clear singing. Opener "Beyond the Horizon" is one of the best songs they have ever written, and if the rest of the album doesn't stack up to that level of memorability, that still means it's pretty damned good. Sometimes I do find that Isole get a bit too experimental with their song structures and lose the thread of what they are doing, but then they get back to the crunching and it's all good again. Here and there they experiment with some harsh vocals, as they have before. It doesn't ruin the songs, but the harsh vocals just don't fit in, and are not compositionally integrated, so they are just unnecessary. Overall this is a solid, if not amazing, entry in their discography.
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