Izah - Sistere
Nordvis Produktion
Atmospheric Sludge Metal/Post-Rock
4 songs (1'12'13'')
Release year: 2015
Reviewed by Jared
Surprise of the month

I think it’s always exciting to bring in the New Year with a fresh new metal act to the table, namely Izah, a post-rock and atmospheric sludge metal band band hailing from The Netherlands. Sistere is their debut album, following two EPs, and also touring with acts such as Baroness, Mono, Cult of Luna, and a favorite of mine, The Ocean. This over one hour journey is a long trek that slams into barriers of extreme sludge, bold rock, but also reaches to emotional, more atmospheric ventures.

For starters, this album is indeed long, but only containing four tracks. The song lengths are huge, ranging from 11 to 15 minutes, and finally the fourth and final track clocking in at over a whopping 30 minutes. No doubt there is abundance of ideas flowing in each track, from more groovy and hardened sludge, but also reaches beyond that to deliver a memorable atmosphere. Indefinite Instinct begins with a windy atmosphere, the kind that feels appropriate for a black metal album introduction. The first track follows a medium tempo, including some toughened sludge and some rock sounding chords to go along with. But it balances softer, more atmospheric moments that all feel very connected. The roughness of the song dissipates halfway through and spends a lot of time displaying a more meaningful and emotional atmosphere that many songs like to swing back in forth with.

The album gets a bit sterner with the second track, Duality. Drumming is indeed more radical and guitars are more of a heavy hammer when it comes to riffing. Moments get a little catchier with this one, although some moments may grow repetitive, it still kept me hooked. Finite Horizon is a great mash up of moods, from slow intense moments, to the soft clang of distortion absent guitars and clean vocals that reach a sad, yet beautiful tone. Moments drifted me into thinking of bands such as Agalloch, due in part to this album dipping slightly into the folky and black metal influences, but it is in its own right, its own kind of melancholic journey.

Sistere may contain some lengthy tracks to sit through, but the songs did not feel to strain and kept me interested with each passing second. The rich atmosphere, alongside stepping through a thick sludge of metal, Sistere is a great album that shows that Izah is completely rocking along the correct path this year with their very first full length record.

Killing Songs :
Indefinite Instinct, Finite Horizon
Jared quoted 82 / 100
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