Immortal
Sons of Northern Darkness


4.5
superb

Review

by onlyhuman USER (17 Reviews)
November 5th, 2012 | 24 replies | 1,393 views


Release Date: 2002 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Immortal Discography Review Chapter VII: Immortal's second album that brushes with the perfection that would finally be achieved on their most recent studio release, All Shall Fall.

1 of 1 thought this review was well written

Immortal's career is what some would affectionately describe as a roller coaster ride, Albums such as Pure Holocaust and At The Heart Of Winter proved to be some of black metal's finest, but on the other end of the scale the sub-standard Damned In Black and Blizzard Beasts showed that the band was as human as the next band. Ultimately, however, the band would iron out the creases in their thrash-ridden black metal formula, releasing two of the best in their catalogue and also two of the best that black metal had to offer. The first of these was their seventh studio release Sons Of Northern Darkness, a fifty minute long eight track affair that came right off of the back of the exceedingly mediocre Damned In Black and put Immortal back near the top of the black metal pile.

Three songs from this album are among the best in the band's entire discography, those songs being One By One, Tyrants and In My Kingdom Cold. These songs show off the band's signature sound, seamlessly fusing black metal with some of the genre's thrash influence. In My Kingdom Cold is possibly the best song they have ever written, with some brutal and yet catchy riffing and a very strong vocal performance from Abbath, unleashing some blood curdling shrieks during the chorus, screaming out the titular words "in my kingdom cold" in a tone that shows only apocalyptic chaos. Tyrants is home to one of the best drum performances Horgh ever put to record, switching from blast beats to thrash beats without any audible breaks in the sound whatsoever. One By One is the guitar player's song of this album, opening it up in spectacular fashion. However, this is not riff happy in the sense that the opener to At The Heart Of Winter was, instead being a much more refined and yet all the more ingenious style of aggression, being off the scale in both creativity and technicality. This is certainly Abbath's finest album, showcasing a musical evolution from the previous albums in ways that many guitarist's can only dream of.

The only song that shows any less talent than the others is the epic closer Beyond The North Waves which, at eight minutes in length, drags on a little too long for its own good, and repeats the same riff set a few too many times, something that Immortal are rarely guilty of. This is not to say that Beyond The North Waves is a bad song, as it is still light years ahead of much black metal. It is just a shame to see Abbath and his band release a less than stellar song, having been a band that, on its good albums, is flawless throughout. This is the one example of a great Immortal album that is not one hundred percent perfect.

The best thing about this album is that it set the stage for something even greater in the form of the band's last release to date, All Shall Fall, which built upon the thrash-influenced black metal styling the band had been experimenting with to mixed results for several albums. Sons Of Northern Darkness is a very fast, powerful and atmospheric album, with every single song feeling exactly like the lonely, desolate winter backdrops that Abbath describes so vividly in them, that is almost without fault. Were Beyond The North Waves a little shorter, this would have been their finest until the album that followed it off, as even the song In My Kingdom Cold on its own is more than worth purchasing this album for. This is definitely not a release to be missed, deserving listen from every metal listener no matter what their preferred genre, as it manages to blend many of these genres throughout, although generally sticking with the band's own sound that they have refined and honed to near perfection by this point.



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Comments:Add a Comment 
Hawks
November 4th 2012



35362 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Immortal's second album that brushes with the perfection that would finally be achieved on their most recent studio release, All Shall Fall.

All Shall Fall rules, but this is way better.

Digging: Brutal Truth - Extreme Conditions Demand Extreme Responses

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2012



7983 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

No yeah this is their best

AngelofDeath
Staff Reviewer
November 4th 2012



16134 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Best riffs, best Immortal.

Hawks
November 4th 2012



35362 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

This is like All Shall Fall only about a million times darker and more epic. All Shall Fall is awesome too though so fuck it.

TheSpirit
November 4th 2012



17632 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

At the heart of winter is my fav but this does have some awesome riffs

Digging: Venus Star - Nigredo Expulsion

Hawks
November 4th 2012



35362 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

(no dodgy overly long closing track )

Beyond the North Waves is the best song here wtf?

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2012



7983 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

All Shall Fall is so mediocre compared to this

Hawks
November 4th 2012



35362 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

All Shall Fall is like their 5th best album.

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2012



7983 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Crisper production isn't a compliment in my eyes regarding Immortal, referring to your earlier post

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2012



7983 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I disagree wholeheartedly

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2012



7983 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

No, but super clean and crisp production would take away from the atmosphere of a lot of albums I love

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2012



7983 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

It's pretty clean. I don't know why you are trying to convince me to agree with you

ThrashHard
November 4th 2012



196 Comments


still gotta check these guys out good review

TheSpirit
November 4th 2012



17632 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

"better production is always a good thing"



Ugh no no no no no






Hawks
November 4th 2012



35362 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Yeah a lot of the time better production isn't good at all. At least for black metal.

ViralOblivion
November 4th 2012



7679 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Album owns

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2012



19621 Comments


viral you like these guys cool

Digging: The Who - Tommy

Curse.
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2012



7983 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

No wonder why you like BFMV more than this

TheSpirit
November 4th 2012



17632 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

The production here is great anyway I don't get how it can make THAT much a difference

KingHarkinian
November 5th 2012



435 Comments


I have to agree with myself on this one.



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