March 2007 Archives
There's a couple of very odd things about me reviewing this album, firstly in general, I've nearly completey lost interest in the Doom/Death style of music, something I was very obsessed with during it's artistic peak in the mid 90s. Most recently my obsession has been with Enslaved and their particular brand of psychadelic viking metal as well as delving into the ever expanding arena of avant garde and intellectual black metal.
Also, a long time ago when I was deeply involved in the doom/death scene I recall chatting to the vocalist Paul from November's Doom in that venerable IRC forum #doom-metal. This was when they barely had an EP release to their name, at the time I reall Paul was a great bloke, but at the time I wondered if these guys were coming in too late on an already solid scene.
I'm happy to say that this band has continually improved over the past ten years to the point where they are now making music that compares solidly with the artists considered key to founding this scene.
Paul possesses an excellent death growl, utilising solid technique to deliver one of the most intelligible yet powerful deliveries I've heard. My mate Jens thinks his death growls are better than Akerfeldt, personally I'm not so sure.
Musically it's a really good album that occasionally steps outside the well defined boundaries of doom-death to draw mild influence from other metal styles including contemporary metalcore. This cross pollination is well thought out and quite sucessful. Production is by Dan Swanö which I think is very appropriate as I can see that in their music they take more influence from him specifically than say Opeth or Katatonia.
The biggest criticism is that the album doesn't sustain the strength throughout, there are a couple of tracks that could be truncated and some that maybe don't fit stylistically with the majority of the album.
Despite that I have found myself spinning this album quite regularly since I got my hands on it. 8/10
The past two days, the weather here in Norway has been fantastic.
One of the amazing things about this country is that when close to zero, the weather is usually better than when it's closer to +10
Spring is just around the corner, and like the plans I've noticed the rapid lengthening of the days recently. It's got to the point now that the sun has come up by the time I set out to work, which casts everything in a gorgeous light. There's a real noticeable difference in the angle of the sun here compared to Oz and that casts a radically different style of light on everything, this is most apparent at dawn.
We have a lot of cloudy, rainy weather here so when you get a couple of days of deep blue cloudless skies, you really notice the changes in light. This was especially picturesque today, the highlight being when we crossed Hafrsfjord.
As i sat on the bus today I listened to Nick Drake's Pink Moon, which was in retrospect definitely the perfect choice for such weather. This sublime combination of mental state, visual and audible perfection created a mini-epiphany.
Update: David pointed out that early this morning was the Spring Solstice, which I think explains the unique light of today.