Certainly, this is the best musical release by
Ihsahn since the last
Emperor disc (Prometheus). Hell.... even the last Peccatum disc was nothing
to shake a stick at. Along with Asgeir Mickelson on the kit, Ihsahn controls
nearly every aspect of composition heard on this first solo record entitled
"The Adversary". This album contains 9 tracks and 50 minutes of
progressive music in the vein of later Emperor & Borknagar... whence,
the musicians involved! The guitar work contains the typical Ihsahn technical
quirkiness, with the usual drumming wizardry of Sir Mickelson. Much of the
album has a hearty clean vocal approach, utilizing his sorta King Diamond
whaling / chanting. Ihsahn doesn't necessarily throw any black metal out
of the picture either. Still, in a satisfying sense, there are plenty of
shrieking vocals in the mix to pinpoint this album as an extravagant, near-black
metal assault. With Ihsahn and Asgeir, you almost have to expect the unexpected!
Some tracks like "Astera Ton Proinon" and "The Pain is Still
Mine" use an extremely melodic approach, while others like "Panem
Et Circenses" and "And He Shall Walk In Empty Places" sound
exactly like Emperor (awesome kicks & blasts)! Ihsahn has shown that
he is still on top of his musical level and this work should allow people
to enjoy more than just his and Asgeirs' past accomplishments. Take a gander...
this one can't be ignored!
Reviewed By: Thomas Mitchell