Today is the 1st of August, Schweizer Nationalfeiertag / National day in Switzerland, and on this rainy day in the mountains of Lucerne, I am writing about a new EP from the promising electronic music artist, Ironheart. His new EP, Outremer, has four songs with a concept of heavy historic Eastern vibes, derived from the story of the Crusaders’ journey to the Holy Land, their exploration, and battles.
The album opener is “Edessa,” a 3:30-minute-long instrumental song that stands out for its big long build-up in its structure and build. The musical foundation here strictly follows Eastern medieval melodies, and everything else varies on top of this foundation. Ironheart accompanies the historic Eastern melody loop with his electronic drums, beats, female vocal effects, and eventually builds to the highest point with additional dubstep elements in the last part of the song. It is a simple song with powerful vibes that immediately takes you back to the memory that is associated with Eastern vibes. In my case, it was the Medieval Total War video games that I played a long time ago, which introduced me to the world of non-electronic soundtrack music.
The second song, “Antioch,” is also very much like the Medieval Total War game soundtracks, specifically reminiscent of Canadian-Australian composer Jeff van Dyck, and his work in Rome Total War and Medieval Total War II. You get to hear this familiar vibe once you start playing with a nation from the Middle East, which was done to give a better experience of the specific culture and environment of those nations. I realized after listening to Outremer a few times, Ironheart distinguishes himself from others with his unusual addition of dubstep elements and electronic beats to medieval folklore music, and this is exactly what you get while listening to “Antioch,” with a similar approach to the first song. The medieval Eastern melody becomes a foundation for the song on the loop, and we get to hear many variations of it while being broken into a million pieces by dubstep elements. It is rather like the live performance of a lead guitar player, playing long improvised guitar solos in live performances as opposed to Ironheart, who does something similar with his personal tools.
The third song on the album, “Eye of the Storm,” is accompanied by a female vocalist, Iveen. I used to listen to electronic music with talented vocalists with a similar voice to Iveen’s, and this song immediately reminded me of some good old-school DJ Tiesto and Morgan Page songs. I think Eye of the Storm has the highest commercial potential thanks to Iveen‘s beautiful soothing voice and brilliant performances.
Also, “Eye of the Storm” doesn’t necessarily maintain the heavy Eastern vibes that we hear on the first two songs, changing the theme’s direction to video game soundtracks that we usually get to hear in the closing credits part in fantasy games about heroism, love, and a warrior’s life. Still, the music has got so much folklore in it.
The album closer, “Kingdom of Heaven,” does follow the story with its title, bringing back Christian medieval temple vibes in its musical origins. It is the heaviest song on this album, with a massive electronic music structure of beats, builds, and resolutions accompanied by a Church choir of men singing medieval melodies in the background, which immediately brought back memories of the legendary band, Era, who taught the world the combination of rock and medieval music.