The fourth full-length studio album by legendary Norwegian Black Metal band.
The last Immortal album to feature founding member Demonaz Doom Occulta on guitar, and the first to feature Horgh on drums. Demonaz was diagnosed with acute tendinitis which prevented him from playing guitar at the required speed for Immortal's music.
How should we consider Immortal’s "Blizzard Beasts"? It’s undoubtedly the band’s weakest record, but is it a total misstep? Perhaps not. The terrible production of this album has been much discussed on reviews and forums. Immortal have slightly changed their sound from their previous three albums. There are many things on here that we can consider a great improvement from previous works. First of all, the songs sound slightly more varied even the ones on the one album. Abbath is no longer playing the drums. He is a very good musician, but drums just didn’t seem like his thing, he made many mistakes and it almost seemed like he wasn’t able to keep up with the speed he needed to drum at. Horgh does a great job keeping up with the speed of the guitars on this album and doesn't rely entirely on blastbeats, which is always a positive. Also the songs, instead of sounding like plain Raw Black Metal, they are slightly more melodic, some acoustic parts come back, there are even moments when you can hear some Thrash Metal incorporated into Black Metal, and Abbath’s vocals are much better, have more strength in them, and actually vary. Best of all they even have some rhythm. It’s not like he’s just speaking them at random times. Some of his screams which was on “Diabolical Fulmoon Mysticism” also come back here.
Highlight track on here would have to be “Mountains of Might” which might as well be one of the best songs Immortal ever made. And this album’s true gem, with better production, could easily fit onto "At The Heart of Winter". One element of Black Metal’s power is to stimulate the listener’s imagination. With most 2nd-wave bands, this means traveling back to pagan blots, medieval battlefields and the shores of hell itself. However, Immortal created a whole world of their own with Blashyrkh, and this is best recalled on “Mountains of Might”. If anyone were to create a “Best of Immortal” release, this would definitely be the song to include from "Blizzard Beasts". Though we're should also say that “Winter of the Ages” is pretty sweet as well, but in more of the "Battles In The North" sense.
Ultimately, "Blizzard Beasts" should be chalked up as a transitional album in Immortal's mighty career, being the last to feature guitarist and founding member Denaz; bassist/vocalist Abbath would take over six-string and songwriting duties, ultimately leading the band out of blastbeat hell and across more broad-scoped, epic terrain. Still, it's hard to say about "Blizzard Beasts" as a failure; the record is brilliant when compared to similar Norwegian Black Metal acts mired in ludicrous "necro" aesthetics, but it just doesn't match up with Immortal's usual balance of Underground credibility with high production and songwriting standards.
Overall, this album is the point where Immortal slightly starts to vary from their older music, and while some don’t like this, it is an awesome progression from the older music!!
Osmose Productions, 1997 (OPCD 051). Made in France. Osmose CD presses from February 2001 up to around 2005 may contain a copy-protection method which renders the CD completely unreadable in PCs and certain modern Hi-Fi systems. This is not indicated anywhere on the packaging.
1. Intro 01:00
2. Blizzard Beasts 02:49
3. Nebular Ravens Winter 04:13
4. Suns That Sank Below 02:47
5. Battlefields 03:40
6. Mountains of Might 06:38
7. Noctambulant 02:22
8. Winter of the Ages 02:33
9. Frostdemonstorm 02:54
Total playing time: 28:56