Chuck Schuldiner Project

Saturday, September 5, 2020

Isenmor - Shieldbrother

The American folk metal scene is a really interesting one to me. As someone who managed one of the major bands in the scene for a few years, I am always confused by both how goo a lot of these bands are, how in demand they often are but also how few their seem to be. This is something Isenmor seek to fix. Their potent new record, Shieldbrother is done in their unique 'Gewyrdelic' (It means historical) folk metal sound replete with dual violinists is something that is certain to please the drinking horn bearing masses of the metal scene. 

This is a band who throughout exude a strong sense of fun. Their penchant to blend drinking songs ('Drink To Glory') with epics ('Sigurd's Song') is very much in line with the greats of the genre. In many cases you can see the healthy blend of influences that they feature. There is a wonderful elegance to the execution and the way that the band eagerly press forward makes for addictive listening. This is certainly something that fans of bands like Ensiferum and Eluveitie are going to get a lot out of. They avoid a lot of the sillier 'party band' tropes that largely undid the folk metal scene in the early 2010's and treat the genre with the respect it deserves - it's exciting to see. 

Shieldbrother is a lot of fun to listen too. The big open throated choruses, the gnarly black metal rasps and of course the oodles of melody make for something that is compelling and interesting. Yes - this is a nerd record, but it's pretty obvious that the folks in Isenmor know that. They are playing to their market, giving us metal that hearkens to the glory days of the genre and is really a blast to sink your teeth into. For those of us who want tales of yore, fun and flashy melodies, big choruses and something to swig beers too - it's a veritable blast. 

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