The Last Album I bought...
Thought it'd be a good time to update this snippet of useless info as I think I should lay off the purchasing for a little
bit. Last time I put money into the music industry was rather pleasant! Now for my inferior reviews:
SATYRICON - Dark Medieval Times
I bought The Shadowthrone some months ago and I absolutely love it. Though I tend to like a full, bass heavy and crystal
clear production for the most part, Satyricon, Emperor, Entombed, Darkthrone et al have all impressed me with the savagery
on display. The Shadowthrone sounded very full of life regardless and I expected much of the same with their first album.
Not having listened to any of the kind of raw, unproduced demos that stir the underground I didn't know a guitar could sound
so... I don't know, I couldn't make it out for all the distortion. But to be perfectly honest, with the acoustics, drumming
and general atmosphere I didn't really care. Really love the black metal atmosphere. Which I bring up so much because I can't
really cling to anything else with this music. The songs aren't the typical songs where lyrics, riffs and vocal tones rest
comfortable in the mind. And other than the traditional pieces, it certainly isn't going to be indicative of its time either.
But to create the violence, straightforward dogma, skepticism and organic nature within its world, the essence is what will
override. And Satyr and Frost have created a beautiful world (10/10)
IN FLAMES - Lunar Strain (Enhanced/Bonus material)
Hmm. My introduction to In Flames after hearing their name started right at the very end. I bought Soundtrack and loved
it, but I knew there would be something better with some digging. Now that I have five of their seven albums, I am totally
convinced of their talents as instrumentalists and songwriters. Fuck deriding them for going from acoustic instruments
(although the acoustic guitars are an awesome weapon) to electronic interludes and reducing the guitar virtuosity.
That's progression. Of course I'd be mad as well if the synthesis done away with the flash and pace changes further into their
bright future but I'm sure they're smarter than that. And this fine piece of work is testament to that. The songs really aren't
there. There's no "hooks" to speak of. Vocals are sparse and blend into the swirl of the music. The light/shade and use of
dynamics is just a little off kilter. But like all the black metal I've heard so far, this enhances both the journey and the
unsettled feeling within. The guitar work is awesome. All roles well played. Michael Stanne has good timing
and vocals. And that is all why this is an important album from a very important band. (8)
OTEP - Sevas Tra
I've been itching to buy this for years. Well since it came out anyway. I heard about them from every damned magazine
I read. And I never, ever once saw this in the stores. Until now. And my filthy little hands snapped it up. Now I know
that with the idea of a screaming/rapping rugged female at the forefront, some curiously tattooed and made up guys
all around her. Some distortion of the English language and so on, people will be scared of that fucking nu-metal
tag again. But like the accusations thrown recently at In Flames, and all the negativity this label has brought talented
bands like Deftones, Slipknot, Korn, Mudvayne and System of a Down, the genuine soul has diminished the insult. If this
is nu-metal as they say, this is how it should sound. Ok it's down-tuned, it's mid-paced, there's a lot of attention to vocals.
There's a fair bit of the stop-start interplay at work. But these songs are aggressive, well written and well performed. The
feeling is draining, the album is as heavy as heavy gets and the creativity is maximum. Ideas pour from this band at every
turn, and although the adventurous and technical virtuosity is not a factor, this is it's own reality and it's a frightening
and brilliant one at that! (9)