Angel Heart

Label: Massacre Records
Three similar bands: Demon/Lawless/Dirty White Boys

Rating: HHHHHHH (3/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm
1. Demon Of The Night
2. Heavens Bleeding
3. Loki
4. Dances With Dragons
5. Love Never Dies
6. She Comes Alive
7. Love Me
8. The Passage
9. Angel Heart

Ian Ainsworth - Lead Vocals
Den Tietze - Guitars
Alison Tietze - Keyboards/Vocals

Russ Vaughan - Bass, Backing Vocals
Gary Reece - Drums, Percussion, Backing Vocals


Neil Ogden and Paul Hume

Produced by Paul Hume, Den Tietze, Ian Ainsworth, Alison Tietze at Summerbank Studio in Stoke- on-Trent (UK)
Mixed and mastered by Paul Hume at Summerbank Studio
Album cover designed by Jan Yrlund / Darkgrove Design

Released 2020-01-10
Reviewed 2020-01-10


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“Izengard's debut album Angel Heart is a magical musical journey where the music is poetically enhanced by the lyrical poetic theme to each song.” That is claimed in the press sheet that came with the promo folder for the British band’s debut album now rereleased on the Massacre label. But it is not only that, the press sheet also says other positive things about it. “Highs and lows from heart wrenching and powerful soul-searching content, to more intense hard-hitting classic style British Rock with an all new feel and delivery. Angel Heart will draw you in, from the opening track right through to the last. No stone has been left unturned in Izengard’s debut offering that just leaves you wanting more!” That all reads as very positive, we always want albums that draws us in from the beginning all the way to the end, it is what I hope for every time I start working on a new album. The problem with these claims is that none of it is true when it comes to Angel Heart, besides perhaps the one about stones, it is a rather trivial and mundane album that passes by unnoticed.

The claim that it is symphonic/classic rock music, classic I subscribe to but the symphonic isn’t really a word I would use to label Angel Heart. There are symphonic pieces like strings and some semi-prominent things in the title track but nothing that really takes place, so classic or melodic rock/hard rock is probably what we have. Fairly typical and somewhat boring singer with some female vocal additions here and there, and a production that feels pretty dated like something from the nineties or early 2000s. The playing time is fairly short, but I think the album lacks both depth and variation, so the short playing time is beneficial to rectify that little issue.

The poetics isn’t there, the ideas aren’t really there and if they really turned every stone, they were doing it in the wrong place because they would have needed to turn a lot more stones to put together something creatively worthwhile. This album isn’t really bad or anything, I think there are some really good parts here but overall it feels rather trivial and doesn’t leave a lasting impression. It would have needed a standout song or two, something that grabs me as a listener and then keeps me interested and makes me want to return, now I fall asleep during the slower parts of Heaven’s Bleeding and don’t wake up before the silence sets in after the last track ends. Sometimes I do however force myself to stay awake and regrets it when it ends.

If I were to choose between this and one of the albums I own the choice would be easy, this would not be selected and now it goes in the computer’s thrash bin which I will then empty and make a little more space on the drive, space that could be used for a good album next time. I am not very impressed with this debut; they need to do something very different from this if they are to make an album that can be recommended. This is a triviality and while it is okay to listen to, it is still wiser not to waste your time with it.