Ihsahn - Angl Review

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Ihsahn - Angl
Ihsahn - Angl


General Information

Original Author: The Uncreator

Artist: Ihsahn

Album: Angl

Genre: Progressive Metal/ Black


01. Misanthrope 02. Scarab 03. Unhealer 04. Emancipation 05. Alchemist 06. Malediction 07. Elevator 08. Threnody 09. Monolith


First off, Even though Ihsahn is known for his work in the Black Metal band Emperor, This album is nothing like Emperor, or Black Metal at all (The only connection to Black Metal really are his screams). Ihsahn attains a perfect sound and balance between guitars, drums, melodies, riffs, clean vocals, hellish screams, and growls. Its a stunningly beautiful and personal trip through the mind of a true legend, master, and innovator.


Utterly flawless. I was amazed when this album began, and ended. He takes a heavier approach with more intricate riffs, melodies, and faster solos combining extreme technique and haunting phrasing. A very progressive, yet completely distinct and original soundscape. The song "Emancipation" has some of the best riff layering I've ever heard, Its so well done. The solo on the song "Unhealer" is mindblowing, as is the one on the song "Threnody", a beautiful blues-metal hybrid.


Somewhat quiet and subtle, I didn't really realize I was hearing the bass until halfway through the album. Ihsahn does the bass and well, and while it still just follows the guitars basically, its still a welcomed aspect of the album. Monolith shows its great tone and sound particularly.


Reminds me a bit of Martin Lopez (ex-Opeth) style, but with a bit more emphasis on double bass and blast beats. And I know your thinking "Oh blastbeats, the typical", well no in fact. They are actually very well done and aren't over used in such a way where after the 3rd song your tired of them. The groove is great, the tone is great, the performance is just ace.


Hellishly demonic to heavenly beautiful, Ihsahn has a voice as diverse as himself. From the high screams and chants of "Malediction", and "Misanthrope", to the stunningly majestic performance of "Threnody", Ihsahn attains perfect control over his monstrous voice. Also, Mikael Akerfeldt makes an appearance as well. Him and Ihsahn wrote the song "Unhealer" together, and they both exchanged vocals on it. the trade - offs between Mikaels insane lows and Ihsahns banshee on fire highs make for a perfect song.


Ihsahn has never failed to impress me with his lyrics in Emperor, Peccatum, and of course his solo efforts. A deep and personal trip through Ihsahns life reveals an artistically perfect execution of poetry.

From "Scarab"

As the sun returns
From the shades of night
So am I reborn from my own corruption

I invoke the consuming fire
And from the ashes mould
The renaissance of my decadent self

At the dawn of my rebirth
The heart is overflowing
I indulge and dissipate

And when the cup is empty
I drink from nothingness
The venom by which I disintegrate

This is not merely pride
Or lust for eminence
This is the reoccurring cycle of my existence

From "Monolith"

It was never the icy winds of the heights
But the coldness of the world
That hardened my foundation

Whether your approach
Is that of praise or blasphemy
The construction of my being
Will remain the same

If my soaring presence
Threatens to break your neck
Then so be it
You shall dread my name

There is a fundamental cleft
Between your world and mine
One of divine origin

Were you to witness
The nakedness of your own soul
It would still appear a tower of Babel

Is it such a crime to go apart and be alone?
Your holy simplicity turns gold into stone

Overall Impression

Just a fantastic and majestic record full of haunting melodies, blistering solos, heavy progressive riffs, Hellish vocals and beautiful clean vocals on top of some of the most well written songs. A Must for a fan of Opeth, Emperor, or anything Ihsahn does, he releases yet another masterpiece.