Seemingly from the cold shadow of many worthy 2011 metal releases, Immortal Souls jumped off the Facedown roster (Dark Balance in Europe) in early October with an album that is simply breathtaking. Though 2007's 'Wintereich' was impressive, the band seemed to have refocused, re-energized, crafting a work that got rid of all the rough edges of songwriting by just making them sharper!
The preponderant beauty of Immortal Souls is their treatment of rhythm. The drummer here is extremely more conspicuous here than on the previous albums, particularly on songs like "Thoughts of Desolation." But don't forget the guitars: often the centerpiece of the songs. Multiple tracks begin with a barrage of a riff or a small piece of it, though riffs give way to great sweeping interludes, as on the track "Reek of Rotting Rye," or baroque picking as on the eight-minute "Requiem of the Funeral Eve." Then there are the solos. The album features both "that's some clean fingering!" and "poor whammy bar!" moments.
Simply stated, this is mature metal. If you want harsh, self-described "winter metal," go ahead and click the buy button. Now. Before the nuclear winter.