Immortal are pretty legendary by now, and as this album is their first since 2009’s All Shall Fall, it has a lot of expectations riding on it.
Does it meet them? The answer is a resounding yes.
With Northern Chaos Gods the return of Immortal sees them hacking at the ice at the very foundations of the Immortal sound, while still retaining occasional elements of the dark melodic grandeur that we saw in the band’s latter output.
Bristling with cold aggression and grim, frosted appeal, the songs on Northern Chaos Gods take aspects of all Immortal eras into their makeup, but overall this is a rougher, rawer return to the roots of the band’s classic sound.
Immortal have always had a sense of melodic depth and atmospheric intensity to them, and it’s great that they still have this side of their frosted personalities on this latest album.
Steeped in the sound of the second wave that they actually helped forge, the Immortal of 2018 doesn’t completely neglect the last couple of decades, but it does favour the band’s early years as the largest inspiration for these new songs. This isn’t to the album’s detriment, however; far from it. This isn’t a lost and confused band trying to recall their golden years. No, Immortal are focused and vibrant on Northern Chaos Gods. Their sound may be 90% drawn from the 90s these days, but their sights are set firmly on the future and the fresh conquests to come.
Northern Chaos Gods is a stunning return from one of black metal’s most iconic groups.
Essential listening for any black metal fan out there.