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Album Reviews : Bane of Isildur – Bane of Isildur EP

By on April 11, 2008

Leading in with an epic battle sound, Sydney’s Bane of Isildur introduce what from the outside one might initially expect to be an attempt to cover Swedish death metal band Amon Amarth. However, as the intro finishes and ‘Howling Winds of Eternity’ begins in a deep guttural growl, the band already proves that they have something different to offer. With an epic and soaring lead guitar sound, chugging riffs and blackened death metal vocals greeting the listener, the band begins to take us on a journey back in time to the battlefields in the Nordic lands of Europe.

Branded as Triumphant War Metal, the soaring lead guitar along with the underlying drumming particularly draws my attention with its ability to keep the keep each song original and interesting. The atmosphere created within the music leaves me with an uplifting sense that while in the chaos that surrounds, there is hope left. It’s almost as if the band has translated into music the words that Tolkien used to describe Frodo and Sam while on the slopes of Mount Doom in the classic story ‘Lord of the Rings’.

Influences in the music have been gathered from bands such as Immortal, Einherjer, Amon Amarth and the legendary Bathory, yet still keeping a sense of originality within the genre. The one main criticism that I have is that the recording of the vocals sounds a little too rough and distorted. This could be seen as being in the ‘true’ black metal spirit, but I can’t help but want a bit more clarity.

With a new album in the works, and after hearing some of the new tracks live, I’m definitely excited to hear what’s to come from Bane of Isildur. 8/10

Band: Bane of Isildur
Album: Bane of Isildur EP
Year: 2006
Genre: Viking/Battle Metal
Label: Independent
Origin: New South Wales, Australia

Track Listing:
1. Intro (Raven’s Gate)
2. Howling Winds of Eternity
3. The Gates of Valhalla
4. Grey Skies of Winter (Reviewers Choice)
5. The One
6. Arise Triumphant
7. Outro (In Flames Victorious)