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ENSLAVED - Blodhemn (12" Gatefold LP)

Norway | Progressive Black/Viking
Price Range:   $18.88
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Osmose re-issue on gold vinyl with black splatter (180g), gatefold, full-color on 350g with gloss lamination, all assembly in a PVC overbag. Exclusive U.S. distribution through Hells Headbangers.

This album is where Enslaved first really started to experiment with compositional forms or melodic ideas outside of straight or traditional black metal, and as such it'seems to draw on several different genres in its scope...all the same, old fans of this band won't find anything to complain about with this release, as it truly is just as fast, epic, and aggressive as anything they had done before. However, there is a definite 'widening' of both Enslaved's focus on songwriting skill and the expressiveness of Ivar's guitar playing, which is breaking through stylistic boundaries constantly. Also, Dirge Rep (formerly of Gehenna) and Roy Kronheim joined the band before this release, cementing, finally, a stable lineup after Trym left to occupy the drumthrone of Emperor. On 'Blodhemn' we hear a state-of-the-art black metal band coming to terms with their last three records, and planning for the future...as such, this can be seen as a sort of 'transition' release for this band, but it is excellent nonetheless, and actually features some of their most impressive material. A very good release from this ever-evolving, innovative group, and a bridge to the flat-out progressive genius that was to come.

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