14 Feb 2020 - Thorsten
Atmospheric-Blackened-Death-Metal | Within Mind Records | Release date: 14 Feb 2020
Debut album by Seattle’s next hope in extreme and yet atmospheric metal.
Debut albums are very complicated, especially nowadays, when it’s more or less already do or die. Either your record is strong enough to attract as much attention as necessary or not. With Seattle’s new five-piece collective Izthmi the answer is a straightforward “YES!” The band surrounding vocalist Jakob Keizer is able to throw a lot of different influences and genres into the blender stirring it a lot and then pouring a mesmerizing collection of songs into the listeners’ ears.
Atmospheric acoustic guitars and heavy shredding – yet never without a strong sense for melodies – provided by two guitarists who seemingly have listened to lots of doom and black metal although they are able to develop a very self-sustaining amalgam and not to sound like a clone of any role model. The ability to give the album a red line in the form of little distortion on some of the tracks and some over-steering connected to the synth sounds.
One thing that definitely doesn’t go unnoticed is the fact that the drumming is definitely on point and a very essential part of the songwriting. The band uses a lot of dynamic changes in style and pattern and very often the force steering it all or connecting it all is Nolan Head’s drumming. He incorporates precise blastbeats as well as small, minute parts. A brilliant example of Izthmi’s breathtaking songwriting is “Useless is the Song of Man, From Throats calloused by name” – huge buildings are constructed and torn apart, small and calm parts go hand in hand with explosions and eruptions.
Not a lot of bands will be able to convince the audience as much in a genre of their own, because that is what makes this record even more impressive. The band can draw from a bunch of genres and never sound like a pure black metal band, or a pure death metal band. They are always self-conscious in their arrangements and sound. If you are looking for a new band to “know” before they become big – Izthmi might very well be it!