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All reviews - Books (1) - Music (6)

Cheap Trick

Posted : 7 years, 9 months ago on 28 January 2010 09:13 (A review of Kärgeräs)

Kärgeras is Czech's Root's most confusing and yet at the same time, rewarding album. It tells an epic, William Faulkner-like tale of an ancient race living in an ancient nation menaced by a Lovecraftish-monster called Dygon with a brave hero called Rodäxx, women giving birth to demons and..
Fuck it, Big Boss has some deep visions here.

Lykorian, with Kärgeras Prologue are two instrumental, which circle around a very catchy lead-melody, that is repeated throughout the whole album. Self-titled Kärgeras is the first with some vocals. Bib Boss starts to ramble about the mystical ruins of some city somewhere far away. About the vocals. Yeh.
Big Boss does some very insane shit here. His vocals carry from King Diamong-like falsetto to very low mumblings, more traditional death-growls,silent whispers and furious exclamations, monotonous incantations and almost opera-like vocals to something indescribable.

Prophet's Song is one of my favourite pieces. BB sings quite softly in here and in the end we have some Cheap Trick-soloing(!?)
by Blackie. The acoustic passages are sheer brilliance also.
Rulbräh and Rodäxx are quite different with the first being a mid-tempo semi-ballad and the second with Manowar-lyrics about the great hero, stronger than steel defeating the.. what the hell is this?

Old Man and Old Woman is a two-piece. These two songs have some scary stuff, Big Boss soungs absolutely possessed. The lead-melodies are very grim and we hear some menacing drumming in both ones. Old Woman has also the only blastbeat-section on the whole album.

The monster is getting more powerful by the black stone of vengeance. The little girl Rullbräh has been set to break the curse by somehow and is harassed by a witch who is responsible for summoning Dygon and... I don't know. Help me out here.

Equirhodont - Grandiose Magus and Dygon - Monstrosity are both very dark and epic pieces. Blackie goes through an epic repeative riff with Big Boss repeating the word 'destruction' over and over again. Very apocalyptic and very stylish.

Trygän-Sexton is I thing quite popular live-piece, whic is quite confusing because the song itself is very.. well, confusing.
The instruments are used very carefully and the main point is slowly pounding drums and bass-lines, and Jiri's preaching. In the end we hear some acoustic-licks also.
Dum, Vivimus, Vivanus is a short little closing bit with wordless vocals. Dygon is defeated, or is it? I'm not quite sure. But the threat is always alive and I'm quite eager to hear the upcoming sequel-album to this. Big Boss is already over 60 and still keeps going strong.

This one is very progressive, not death or black metal at all but something metal, strange, scary, bright, dark, deep, everything at a same time. Hear this one and you will grow inside quite surely.

"There the women gave birth to Death
when the Black Stone was glowing with life,
and she was a stranger at home
and she will become her own victim..."


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Khyl

Posted : 8 years, 4 months ago on 2 July 2009 10:50 (A review of Gonin-Ish)

I had never heard of this band before until I read a very deep-insight article from some music magazine some time ago. I haven't even heard so much japanese music, though I like very much Sigh, Sabbat Gallhammer, Boris and stuff like that. You could easily just label this one as a progressive metal but it is much more than that. The first words that pop unto my silly gulliver are something like, death,avant-garde,thrashgrind-fusion-hc thingie with female vocals and a quite whacky outlook.

The band was formed in 1996 as an Anekdoten- cover band. First demo was finished in 1998 and they managed to get a recording deal the following year. They released their self-titled debut in 2000, and the second one, Naishikyo-Sekai
came out in 2005 by Seasons Of Mist, after five painful years of writing, recording and and producing. The third album is already under work.

Kyoukotsu-no-Yume is a short intro bit, which has some Frank Zappa/Pekka Pohjola(!) kind of vibe with fusionlike keyboard-runnings and jazz-drumming. Very, very interesting starter.

Koumon-Kokuin-Shintai opens with a very direct blastbeat-hammering and fuzzy basslines and after some noise-insanity the vocals turn into clean surprisingly painless. The combination of traditional metal riffage and 70'esque keyboard-patterns is something very orgasmic when done the right way. Damn.

The lyrics are in japanese so there's no hope understanding them. I guess they are about something ancient but I'd have to get much deeper into chinese literature, in an ancient, mostly forgotten dialect of course. Settle.

Anoji, the vocalist got me right away. She has some of the sickest death-growls I've heard in a while and I love her clean bits also. Futari Asobi gets also right into business with some very cleverly constructed lead-guitar parts. After about three minutes the guitars stop and we have a quite lenghty piano-interlude, which goes again into a massive wall of sound with all kinds of background-noises, screaming, wailing, moaning, explosions that lead the song into it drum-driven's climax. Man this album got me allready by the balls after three songs. That is always a good sign.

Tsuki To Hangyoujin then again has an ambient-like opening with the traditional chimes and classical piano that sounds really.. epic. This song as a whole is one of the mellowest ones on the record, and maybe closest to what could be called 'basic progressive metal'. The vocals just melt me every time. Jeeszh.

Rou No Aruji is fucking crazy, the bands just losts it completely and bash in every fucking note and tune they can get out of them, for a while I mean. After a bit of that mentioned above, Fumio, the guitarist duh, gives a very old-skool metal soloing, then it goes into mentally demented elevator-jazz. Love it. The sung bits are like chanting. Closes itself with a.. some screaming and.. a few minutes of ambient-bongo-fuzz-noise. Of course. Nice.


Kyoumon Kokun Shintoi was originally released on an earlier demo and is kinda similar with the finished album-version. So it doesn't actually contribute
much anything to the album but it is a quite interesting curiosity.

What could I say about this album? It doesn't resemble almost anything I've heard before. Well the metal-parts have some Sigh-feeling in them so that's pretty good. I better cut the bullshit. If you have an open mind and you prefer interesting musical pieces, take this one into consideration.

Vittu tämä on hyvä.


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Yarp

Posted : 8 years, 6 months ago on 18 May 2009 08:05 (A review of Stream from the Heavens)

"I have seen the Lesser Gods die
I have seen the Mortal Ones scream in horror."

The finnish funeral doom-legend Thergothon managed to release one demo and only one full lenght album in their career before they disbanded. They are still considered to be one of the pioneers of the Funeral Doom style. One of the guitarists went nuts and joined in some christian-nonsense-cult and the singer with the other guitarist went to form This Empty From, which also split-up in at the end of last millenium.

Stream From Heavens was released in 1994, about tho years after it was completed by the band in studio. The album is filt with devastating, very very deep soundworld with Sirkiä's guttural vocals filled with Lovecraft-imagery. The production is not very tidy but it is also a part of the album's thick athmosphere. The guitars consume everything in their way and we also have a group of totally haunting lead-melodies. The keyboard-sound is also very fuzzy and combined with a huge feedback-driven bass-sound, this one is heavy as fuck.

The majority of the album includes long and slow-paced killing, as expected. The Unkown Kadath In Cold Waste is one of the two bit shorter pieces and and it has a very beautiful acoustic/clean keyboard-driven passage which is something you just have to hear to believe it's awesomeness. Elemental has some mid-tempo blasting near it's climax but mostly the music just drags you with it's sharp nails.

Who Rides The Astral Wings also includes surprisingly lot of clean vocals hand in hand with the basic-growls, and the combination works pretty well, though we could have also managed without them. They still add their own bit into this very versatile longplay. The album ends with Crying Blood And Crimson Snow, the other shorter one, this time witch vocals mostly in spoken style. A fair closener, though not the highlights on the record. The wholeness is still a pure diamond, very stable.

Enought the crap. Stream From The Heavens is an essential piece of FD-history and a rare, flawless jewel. Go get it if you find it.
_________________


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Get this one.

Posted : 8 years, 7 months ago on 7 April 2009 11:45 (A review of The Human Equation )

I first thought that Ayreon would be just something high-pitched and melodic power jingle, I still thought give it a try and the Human Equation sounded the most interesting one, and the most progressive too. The vocal work is mostly magnificent and the album has so many layers in it. Many aspects of it also strongly remind me of The Who's rock opera Tommy. Also the story is kinda similar, from a perspective of a person, who is totally unaware of his surroundings.
The flute parts also remind me about Jethro Tull. The record begins with Virgil, a short and soft intro, nice, but not anything particulary special. Then we hear the car crash and the story begins. Isolation works as an introduction for most of the vocalists, pretty good and one part is clearly from Dark Side Of The Moon. Multi-layered and will give a positive image still at this point. Magnificent solo by Arjen, also reminds me of DSOTM. Pain, has a gloomy and cool intro with nice vocals from Graves and Devin's screams are just pure perfection. Also Finlay's short bit as love works pretty well. The orchestral-interlude that comes out of nowhere after the second chorus is just orgasmic. Overall a great piece of music .
Mystery begins with acoustic guitar and kinda clever verses. It is also one of the stongest 'Tommy' songs on the album. Voices, another one with the ole' acoustic. The beginning is a bit cheerfull with violin, flute and stuff. Truly a Jethro. Pride's vocal lines are quite basic but Reason and Åkerfelt's Fear have some ballbreaking lines. Short, simple and melodic guitar solo stands up properly and overall this is again good stuff.
Childhood has a very proggy keyboard opening, and the song is basically a simple ballad with violins and soft vocals. Hope is a short one, but it has a very cathy melody and the keyboards are pure classic. Lyrics are more brighter and..'hopeful'. Then we go to School, again the acoustic and soft voices, then goes Devin and shows his ultimate Rage, the man is simply a genious. The instrumental part is like from some epic viking stuff, Bathory etc, bit out of place but brings quite twisted athmosphere, which is just good.
Passion and Reason show their lungs and we return to acoustic with Townshend's commandments. Short time in the Playground with children playing. This is the only instrumental song on the album, it has again some good violin. Memories it's not so memorable, it has the good basic stuff on vocals and epic guitarring but nevertheless, something is missing. The first part of the album ends with Love, which i didn't like so much at the beginning. Still it's kinda poppish and stuff but in some wicked way, I really love it. Great vocals from everyone, i expecially like Passion's and Agony's co-operation.
The second part of the album begins with Trauma and Reason's preaching. Strong Passion stuff and excellent groans by Åkerfeldt. Sing, nice flute at start, the violin is a bit cheesy, but overall a nice ballad.

Pride, a bit heavier song, with LaBrie's vocals that are pure Dream Theater. The flute is like straight from the hands of Ian Anderson himself. Then we have Betrayal, with the nice opera by Reason and nice violins but not much else. But ah, then we have Loser, with the didgeridoo intro. I also just love all that celtic stuff. Vocals are good and this song has balls. This song has Mike Baker's (rip) only performance on this album as Father, he's just twisted and gold. Also Devin's screams at the end, pure excellency. The wicked keyboards are just prog. After the previous masterpiece, Accident is a bit boredom, nothing much to say about that, expect Oliver Wakeman's(Rick's son) brilliant keyboard solo-bit.
Realization has nice organ and one of the best flutes on the album, pretty good one.
Two more to go, Disclosure has a short bit of good keyboards but that's all. Then we have stillConfrontation, an epic closener for the album. The protagonist "wakes" from his coma and all the emotions just cause a huge wave of.. well emotions, ending with Åkerfeldt's giant roar.
Very, very versatile album as a whole, it's a pretty genious work. The concept is just brilliant, as the musicianship and the whole storyline and the vocals natrally.

Sorry for the kinda moodflowish, text, It's pretty old one, when I heard this one for the first time and was quite emotional about it :P
Enough the shit, get this one.


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Some essential doom.

Posted : 8 years, 7 months ago on 30 March 2009 11:22 (A review of Volume 1)

Pagan Altar is the greatest, for sure.
Actually this is just a compilation but you can easily count this one as a full-lenght album because before this the band had only released one demo-tape before this. This is actually the "official" release of that demotape, and it came out in 1998.

Besides Witchfinder General, this band formed in 1978 and with huge lack of attention, is one of those who began with ye old nwobhm and evolved to the thing that was to be the traditional doom metal. Not a bad solution at all I'd say.

The brothers Jones are in the middle. Terry handles the amazing nose-vocals by the doom-handbook and Alan smashes the delicious riffs. Rhytm-section is properly taken care of
by the duo Trevor Portch and John Mizrahi. Pagan Altar never had one, longer and solid line-up but the Jones's kept the machine going on and we should be very grateful for that to happen.

The title song starts with some gloomy monk-chanting and then continues to the first, majestetical riff that tells it all. Alan Jones is the king and one of the most underrated metal-guitarists of all time.
The sounds on the album are a bit snuffy as it's supposed to be. Terry Jones sings his occult-vocals just properly between the notes and the overall athmosphere on the album is just pure gold.

In The Wake Of Armadeous doesn't leave himself behind and the clever rhytming just kills you without mercy. From the synthezised beginning of Judgment Of The Dead we go on to The Black Mass. This song is a one fucking diamond, just adore this one. The chorus is one of the best I've ever heard.
After Night Rider we slow things down a bit and mellow with Acoustics and Reincarnation.
Reminds me a bit of Witchfinder General's ultracorny 'I Lost You', but even better. Terry just has it.

I guess that's all the blind cheering for this beauty of an album. Get it, listen to it.
It's absolutely flawless.


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A great, dark progressive piece.

Posted : 8 years, 8 months ago on 17 March 2009 09:36 (A review of Pawn Hearts [CD] 2005)

One of my favourite albums of all time. Very, very stable, even though Lemmings fades a bit when compared to the other two. Peter Hammill's vocals are insane as
hell, and at the same time very melancholic and full of bittersweetnes.
Lemmings is a bit whacky opener with some insane piano and sax-work. Man-Erg completes the most of it's awesomeness simply by Hammill's clean piano and
vocals. In the middle we have some drainages and even a bit of electric guitar
by Fripp from Crimson. But the ultimate climax is naturally yet to come.
In all of it's massiveness, angst, joy, paranoia and fucking a' musicianship, A Plague Of Lighthouse Keepers is one of the three songs that you'd listen first
and then die happily. The band itself does naturally a fine job. Hammill is one
of the most piercing vocalists of all time and David Jackson adds his notch to the chaos with his mentally unstable fonelicks.

A great, dark progressive piece.


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Dog Eat Dog review

Posted : 9 years ago on 29 October 2008 05:25 (A review of Dog Eat Dog)

Wondefully dark, desperate and still very, very captivating with interesting characters. This would surely make a good film.


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