Encyclopaedia Metallum: The Metal Archives

Message board

* FAQ    * Search   * Register   * Login 



Reply to topic
Author Message Previous topic | Next topic
OlympicSharpshooter
The Universal Magnetic

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 3:24 pm
Posts: 1991
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Sat Mar 18, 2006 11:37 am 
 

Aye. Track-by-tracks are not by nature evil, but just often suck in practice.
_________________
hells_unicorn wrote:
His [OSS] reviewing style sucks in my opinion, [...] and his humor is vapid at best and outright buffoonish at worst.

Top
 Profile  
Earthcubed
Peregrinus sine aetate

Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 3:44 am
Posts: 2761
Location: Orocarni
PostPosted: Mon Mar 20, 2006 12:10 am 
 

Okay, I revised my previous LoC review.

Enjoy:

Quote:
It’s tempting to write this project off as Leviathan Jr. ™; the moods explored and the general soundscape of the album both bear a strong resemblance to many of the songs from “The Tenth Sub Level of Suicide.” Indeed, the whole album is deeply rooted in the sort of hellishly cold depression depicted on Leviathan’s debut, and at first I thought this was an evolution of the Leviathan sound. However, much of the material was recorded either before the Leviathan debut or alongside it. In this light, I suppose LoC is a sort of parallel version of the same vision. Lurker of Chalice is the ambient version of Leviathan, and Leviathan is the black metal version of LoC. Moreover, the difference is more than just one of style—the use of ambience to convey feelings of loneliness proves to be far more effective than Leviathan’s blackened depression. This album is a fine accomplishment for Wrest in two regards.


The chief accomplishment of this album is the richness of its moods, the genuine feeling of it. It’s hardly tangible, but it’s there regardless, and it is what separates it from Leviathan’s debut and what gives it its character. This is Wrest’s Hvis Lyset Tar Oss, his outpouring of emotion. He seems to have put much more spirit into this album than he normally would, and the end result is strangely passionate.

The second of the two successes is easier to grasp and more readily apparent: whatever Wrest’s other musical projects may play, there is surprisingly little black metal on here. Hell, for that matter there are relatively few songs that are distinctly Metal with a capital M. “Piercing where they Might” is black metal, with the main riff being obviously inspired from the Thorns/Blut Aus Nord school of dissonance, “Minions” sounds like a doom band doing Xasthur, the 7th track is primarily black(ish) and other songs have a moment or two of metal; but despite this, the music is based more on ambient backdrops and rock-ish riffing. “Spectre As Valkerie Is” is an excellent example on both fronts, opening with a heavy rock riff before delving into ambient territory. The song progresses into more ambience with softer rock guitar over it (2:40) and excellent use of what I think are movie samples, which are used throughout the rest of the album with frequency.

The ambience during the album is a mix of the aforementioned samples with slow-tempo synth (usually string or choir) accompanied by drones of some sort or another (usually a persistent “whirling” tone that sounds like a cross betwixt choir and string). The bass guitar occasionally steps in to play a big role (the third track in particular), as does the six-string. When it does, it is usually to play rockisms (the aforementioned “Spectre As Valkerie Is”), to play in an ambient fashion (“Paramnesia,” the feedback screeches in “Vortex,” etc), or to assume a more atmospheric/less rockish role (the third track, “Fastened to the Five Points,” pretty much any song with short little single-note riffs).

The atmosphere created here is both familiar and unique; it brings to mind images of lying on the desert floor whilst gazing up at the stars, reminiscing of something that will never be again. It’s an overall pleasing if depressing tone that’s better suited to this style than to Leviathan’s suicidal black metal, and an end result that surpasses Leviathan and much other depressing music that’s worthy of purchase.
_________________
Quote:
<@failsafeman> if you touch a girl while you're fucking a gorilla, it doesn't count as gay
<@failsafeman> that's a rule

Top
 Profile  
Earthcubed
Peregrinus sine aetate

Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 3:44 am
Posts: 2761
Location: Orocarni
PostPosted: Tue Mar 21, 2006 10:49 pm 
 

Revised again in light of comments from a friend. Mods, tell me whichever one you prefer (the changes are few and relatively minor).

Quote:
It’s tempting to write this project off as Leviathan Jr. ™; the moods explored and the general soundscape of the album both bear a strong resemblance to many of the songs from “The Tenth Sub Level of Suicide.” Indeed, the whole album is deeply rooted in the sort of hellishly cold depression depicted on Leviathan’s debut, and at first I thought this was an evolution of the Leviathan sound. However, much of the material was recorded either before the Leviathan debut or alongside it. In this light, I suppose Lurker of Chalice is a sort of parallel version of the same vision. LoC is the ambient version of Leviathan, and Leviathan is the black metal version of LoC. Moreover, the difference is more than just one of style—the use of ambience to convey feelings of loneliness proves to be far more effective than Leviathan’s blackened depression. This album is a fine accomplishment for Wrest in two regards.


The chief accomplishment of this album is the richness of its moods, the genuine feeling of it. This is hardly tangible, but it’s there regardless, and is what separates the album from Leviathan’s debut and what gives it its character. This is Wrest’s Hvis Lyset Tar Oss, his outpouring of emotion. He seems to have put much more spirit into this album than he normally would, and the end result is strangely passionate.

The second of the two successes is easier to grasp and more readily apparent: whatever style of music Wrest’s other projects may play, there is surprisingly little black metal on here. Hell, for that matter there are relatively few songs that are distinctly Metal with a capital M. “Piercing where they Might” is black metal, with the main riff being obviously inspired by the Thorns/Blut Aus Nord school of dissonance; “Minions” sounds like a doom band doing Xasthur; the 7th track is primarily black(ish) and other songs have a moment or two of metal. But despite this, the music is based more on ambient backdrops and rock-ish riffing. “Spectre As Valkerie Is” is an excellent example of both styles, opening with a heavy rock riff before delving into ambient territory. The song progresses into more ambience with softer rock guitar over it (2:40) and excellent use of what I think are movie samples, which are used throughout the rest of the album with frequency.

The ambience found throughout the album is a mix of the aforementioned samples with slow-tempo synth (usually string or choir) accompanied by drones of some sort or another—usually a persistent “whirling” tone that sounds like a cross betwixt choir and string. The bass guitar occasionally steps in to play a big role (the third track in particular), as does the six-string. When it does, it is usually to play rockisms (the aforementioned “Spectre As Valkerie Is”), to play in an ambient fashion (“Paramnesia,” the feedback screeches in “Vortex,” etc), or to assume a more atmospheric/less rockish role (the third track, “Fastened to the Five Points,” pretty much any song with short little single-note riffs).

The atmosphere created here is both familiar and unique; it brings to mind images of lying on the desert floor whilst gazing up at the stars, reminiscing of something that will never be again. It’s an overall pleasing if depressing tone that’s better suited to this style than to Leviathan’s suicidal black metal, and an end result that surpasses Leviathan and much other depressing music that’s worthy of purchase.
_________________
Quote:
<@failsafeman> if you touch a girl while you're fucking a gorilla, it doesn't count as gay
<@failsafeman> that's a rule

Top
 Profile  
Cochino
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Mar 11, 2006 10:35 am
Posts: 71
Location: Argentina
PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 3:38 pm 
 

I would like to start submiting reviews, so I'm gonna post my first few here so you can tell me how to improve them. My first language is spanish and I didn't had any official education on english, I learnt it by translating lyrics, watching movies, etc. so please, keep that in mind and forgive my gramathical mistakes.


Macabre - Behind the wall of sleep

Between their full lengths "Sinister Slaughter" (1993) and "Dahmer" (2000) they released a bunch of Ep's and splits, and this is the first one.
The songs on this album are great, including a version of one of my favorites Black Sabbath songs (the one that gives the title to this Ep), but the production ruins them. Since I'm a big fan of the band I listened to the album over and over again until I found some harmonies that aren't appreciables at first, but if someone don't knows the band or don't cares about it that much, is possible that would throw the album away and say, "this is just plain shit", but please, believe me and give it a chance.

It starts with "Fishtales", a very cool and funny song that hoaxes with sailor songs using the last name of the serial killer Albert Fish in different word games. The song mixes, as Macabre many times did, death metal with some folk songs, in this case, as I mentioned before, sailor songs, but the crappy production ruins it, making it almost a illegible ball of sound.
Then comes a very good version of Black Sabbath "Behind the Wall of Sleep", here the production doesn't ruins it that much.
After that comes an old song of the band that was never recorded, "Slaughter Thy Poser", and again shitty prodiction almost ruins it. It could have sound far more brutal, but the music sound very tame and doesn't match with the aggressive vocals.
And then the comes the closing song, "Freeze dried man", which is the best on the whole Ep but also is the one more damaged by the production. Is some sort of a jazz-metal song where the three instruments constantly improvise and variates their parts, but the bass is almost unhearable, and the great stuff Nefarious does in this song goes unnoticed.
So, as a closure to this review I must say, I give it a 80% because the compositions are great, but if I would rate the final product I would give it under 60%

Top
 Profile  
OlympicSharpshooter
The Universal Magnetic

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 3:24 pm
Posts: 1991
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 4:02 pm 
 

"Macabre - Behind the wall of sleep

Between their full lengths "Sinister Slaughter" (1993) and "Dahmer" (2000) they released a bunch of Ep's and splits, and this is the first one.
The songs on this album are great, including a version of one of my favorites Black Sabbath songs (the one that gives the title to this Ep), but the production ruins them. Since I'm a big fan of the band I listened to the album over and over again until I found some harmonies that aren't appreciables at first, but if someone don't knows the band or don't cares about it that much, is possible that would throw the album away and say, "this is just plain shit", but please, believe me and give it a chance."

You've got a bunch of formatting errors, the first example being the second line here. Either hit make a full break between the first two lines and the paragraph following it, or merge them into one. I recommend the latter, since that intro is pretty skimpy.

The word 'favourite' should be singular, so no 's'. Ditto "appreciable".

Don't = doesn't

The last sentence of the first paragraph is way too long. Break it up into smaller, singular ideas.

Example:

Since I'm a big fan of the band I listened to the album over and over again until I found some harmonies that aren't appreciables at first. Someone who doesn't care about the band might possibly throw the album away and say "this is just plain shit", but please believe me and give it a chance.

"It starts with "Fishtales", a very cool and funny song that hoaxes with sailor songs using the last name of the serial killer Albert Fish in different word games. The song mixes, as Macabre many times did, death metal with some folk songs, in this case, as I mentioned before, sailor songs, but the crappy production ruins it, making it almost a illegible ball of sound."

I can't tell what your first line is trying to say. Maybe instead of 'hoaxes' you mean 'parody's'? Replace 'many times' with 'often'. This line is again much too long, and needs to be broken into smaller sentences.

Any time you see the word 'a' before a word that begins with a vowel, you have to change the word 'a' to 'an'.

"Then comes a very good version of Black Sabbath "Behind the Wall of Sleep", here the production doesn't ruins it that much. "

"After that comes an old song of the band that was never recorded, "Slaughter Thy Poser", and again shitty prodiction almost ruins it. It could have sound far more brutal, but the music sound very tame and doesn't match with the aggressive vocals. "

Prodiction = production
The first sound should be "sounded", the second should be "sounds"

"And then the comes the closing song, "Freeze dried man", which is the best on the whole Ep but also is the one more damaged by the production. Is some sort of a jazz-metal song where the three instruments constantly improvise and variates their parts, but the bass is almost unhearable, and the great stuff Nefarious does in this song goes unnoticed."

In the first line, that first 'the' should not be there.

'More' should be 'most'.

'Ep' should be capitalized, EP.

Now, go into your review and put full spaces between each paragraph. As it is, your formatting is quite ugly.

Make those changes, and it's acceptable.

@Earthcubed = I didn't read close enough to discern any massive differences, but either would be quite acceptable and would earn '5' points, depending on the number of prior reviews.
The word 'This' should be before the word 'Is'.

"Unhearable" = inaudible
_________________
hells_unicorn wrote:
His [OSS] reviewing style sucks in my opinion, [...] and his humor is vapid at best and outright buffoonish at worst.

Top
 Profile  
Sean16
Moody Tabulator of Torn Hymens

Joined: Sat May 07, 2005 11:03 am
Posts: 524
Location: Japan
PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 4:06 pm 
 

Hum... It may be rather short but after all, it's only a 4 songs EP, and indeed it hasn't been reviewed yet.
Your English is far from awful IMHO (please notice I'm not a native speaker as well however), but:
- the last sentence seems rather pointless: if you think the EP is worth 60%, just give it 60%! You're indeed asked to rate the "final product" and not only one aspect (songwriting) of it! Many people here, including me, are fed up with high scores for the sake of high scores.
- Try to get more into detail: I'm not familiar with the band and I can't see in your review if songs are rather slow/high paced, how the singer sounds, etc, etc - I can only tell it's "death metal with folk influences". You pretty well explain what you mean by "shitty production" though.
- I would erase the intro if I were you... The last sentence of it adds nothing to the review and will only get you flamed IMHO

But it's only the two cents of another casual reviewer and you should wait for the advice of a more talented person (OSS, were are you?) :)

Edit : Fuck, OSS, you've been faster than me!!!

Top
 Profile  
Cochino
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Mar 11, 2006 10:35 am
Posts: 71
Location: Argentina
PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 4:22 pm 
 

Thank you guys for you reccomendations, I'm surprised by the quantity of stupid gramathical mistakes on my review, I mean some of them are because of my ignorance, but a lot of them I never commit them, and I don't know How I didn't realize it was all wrong written.
I'll pay attention to the length of my sentences and I'll try to describe better the music.
Thanks again.

Top
 Profile  
Cochino
Metal newbie

Joined: Sat Mar 11, 2006 10:35 am
Posts: 71
Location: Argentina
PostPosted: Wed Mar 22, 2006 4:44 pm 
 

ok made some changes. How's it now?
Macabre - Behind the wall of sleep


The songs on this album are great, including a version of one of my favorite Black Sabbath songs (the one that gives the title to this EP), but the production ruins them. Since I'm a big fan of the band I listened to the album over and over again until I found some harmonies that aren't appreciable at first. Someone who doesn't knows the band or doesn't cares about it that much, is possible that would throw the album away and say, "this is just plain shit", but please, believe me and give it a chance.
Now here’s the review song by song:

It starts with "Fishtales", a very cool and funny song that parody’s sailor songs using the last name of the serial killer Albert Fish in different word games. The song mixes, as Macabre often does, death metal with some folk songs. Since, as I mentioned before, the theme is sailor songs, is a mid tempo, but undeniable heavy tune. Corporate Death alternates his high pitched death metal growl with the lower one, showing Macabre’s unique style. Too bad the production makes it sound as an illegible ball of sound.

Then comes a very good version of Black Sabbath "Behind the Wall of Sleep", here the production doesn't ruin it that much.

After that comes an old song of the band that was never recorded, "Slaughter Thy Poser", and again shitty production almost ruins it. It could have sounded far more brutal, but the music sounds very tame and doesn't match with the aggressive death metal vocals.

And then comes the closing song, "Freeze dried man", which is the best on the whole EP but also is the one most damaged by the production. Is some sort of a jazz-metal song where the three instruments constantly improvise and variates their parts, but the bass is almost inaudible, and the great stuff Nefarious does in this song goes unnoticed.

Closure: this is not the perfect presentation for the band to a new listener. If you’ve never heard the band I recommend you to start with Sinister Slaughter, Dahmer or Murder Metal, where the very original style of Macabre can be appreciated at its best. This album is good only if you’re a die hard fan.

Top
 Profile  
ThePerun
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2005 3:45 am
Posts: 2
Location: Germany
PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 9:21 am 
 

I wrote a review for "Powerslave" by Iron Maiden. Please tell me how you like it and how you think it should have been done differently. I'm working on reviews for all other Maiden albums (a long time ago I already posted one for "The Early Days") and eventually hope to review albums by other artists, big and small. Do you think I should carry on this way or change things?

Top
 Profile  
TheStormIRide
Jesuscop

Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2006 6:45 pm
Posts: 1027
Location: Altoona, PA
PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 2:54 pm 
 

ThePerun wrote:
I wrote a review for "Powerslave" by Iron Maiden. Please tell me how you like it and how you think it should have been done differently. I'm working on reviews for all other Maiden albums (a long time ago I already posted one for "The Early Days") and eventually hope to review albums by other artists, big and small. Do you think I should carry on this way or change things?


Post it here.
_________________
Quote:
DON'T GO TO BRAZINDONESIA!!!!!! THEY LIE WITH CLAIM OF BANDS COME TO THERE!!!!!!!!
INDONESIA IS ALWAYS THE YES DECISION!!!!!!! NO TO BRAZIL, INDONESIAN VERY FUCKING YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! \M\\//\

Top
 Profile  
OlympicSharpshooter
The Universal Magnetic

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 3:24 pm
Posts: 1991
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 5:01 pm 
 

Looks fine to me Cochino.
_________________
hells_unicorn wrote:
His [OSS] reviewing style sucks in my opinion, [...] and his humor is vapid at best and outright buffoonish at worst.

Top
 Profile  
ThePerun
Mallcore Kid

Joined: Wed Jun 08, 2005 3:45 am
Posts: 2
Location: Germany
PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 5:02 pm 
 

It already got posted, but here goes:


So very, very nearly absolutely great - 75%

"Powerslave" was the album that catapulted Iron Maiden from their status as "one of the leading hard rock acts" of the world to the very top position that only very few bands in the rock world ever managed to reach. It was a showcase of the band's no-compromise policy, the presentation of which ranged from the unashamedly self-confident album cover to the musical delict of "Two Minutes To Midnight", a song that could just have been a chartbreaking single, had it not been six minutes long. But certainly, the most spectacular piece on the album is the thirteen-minute long "Rime Of The Ancient Mariner", a tour de force that cuts virtually all aspects of Steve Harris' songwriting abilities and to this day stands out as one of the very best -and very longest- songs in Heavy Metal history.

Sadly, one can almost sense the musical stagnation that this album threatened to become a starting point of. Songs like "Back In The Village" or the sub-par instrumental "Losfer Words (Big 'Orra)", a piece of superficial catchiness, sound uninspired and forgettable. "The Duellists", despite being fully loaded with powerful emotion, is painfully flabby.

Nevertheless, these three songs out of eight do not manage to overshadow the album as a whole. The album opener, "Aces High", is a furious song that absolutely rips live and sets the highest expectations for the rest of the album. Besinging the glorious victory of the RAF in the Battle Of Britain, it does complete justice to these heroes of the free world. The aforementioned "Two Minutes To Midnight" then creates a groove that can only make me think of smoky, mid-eighties Hard Rock discos. The lyrics may well be the angriest and most cutting in the band's entire history- at least until "Virus", over a decade later. It is the lyrical misinterpretation of songs like this or "The Trooper" that earned Maiden the completely unfounded reputation of being an aggressive, stereotype Metal band, while precisely these lyrics could serve to prove the exact opposite. Intelligent, critical and perhaps ahead of their time, they scream for an activation of the brain in a way only musicians like Bob Dylan ever did before.

The already mentioned "Losfer Words (Big 'Orra)" complements the procession of the album well, but would not be noticeably missing if left out. The same can definitely not be said of "Flash Of The Blade", a wonderful rocker with a really hooking riff.

The album drops a peg with "The Duellists" (why two songs about swordfighting right after another anyway?) and "Back In The Village", both songs somehow lacking and leaving me with the impression that they were included as fillers, a very strange (and hopefully unfounded) accusation to Maiden.

Everything is forgotten, however, once the majestic "Powerslave" kicks in, the most dramatic and (no pun intended) powerful song of the album. It brings ancient Egypt back to life and gives the whole album a very well needed point of orientation. This is where all the threads run to and where the whole energy that somehow seemed a bit contained in the previous tracks virtually explodes. Also, the instrumental section in the middle may be one of the best in Maiden's career.

The album ends at the highest possible note with the epic "Rime Of The Ancient Mariner", a song based on the Samuel Taylor Coleridge poem of the same name and a masterpiece in its own right. Just like being a summary to Coleridge's work, it is almost like a summary of Maiden's work up to that point, and possibly even a perfect introduction to the band for any new fan.

The album is far from being Maiden's best, and it is not even among my top five. It spawned four absolute classic tracks and one that is also very good, but having three below average tracks is too much to be considered outstanding among the band's back catalogue. "Powerslave" is almost like a slave to its own power, exploding at the one moment but showing its mileage at the other. It is nevertheless absolutely essential listening to any fan of Maiden or mid-eighties metal, with approximately three quarters of an hour spent exploring the depths of a bygone era. And when putting the disk back into its case, any listener will likely once again be struck by the awe-inspiring painting of Eddie, who is depicted as a statue of himself, guarding his own tomb and an album that is so very, very close to being absolutely great.

Top
 Profile  
TheStormIRide
Jesuscop

Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2006 6:45 pm
Posts: 1027
Location: Altoona, PA
PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 9:35 pm 
 

Seems pretty decent, one thing I will suggest though. You talk about the great songs of the album, and how the "ROTAM" is the best track, but then you go on to say all is forgotten once you hear "Powerslave". Maybe it's just the placement of that, that seems off to me. You do go on to explain more about ending with Rime, but I guess that little section seemed a little off. Great work nonetheless!
_________________
Quote:
DON'T GO TO BRAZINDONESIA!!!!!! THEY LIE WITH CLAIM OF BANDS COME TO THERE!!!!!!!!
INDONESIA IS ALWAYS THE YES DECISION!!!!!!! NO TO BRAZIL, INDONESIAN VERY FUCKING YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! \M\\//\

Top
 Profile  
Earthcubed
Peregrinus sine aetate

Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 3:44 am
Posts: 2761
Location: Orocarni
PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 11:53 pm 
 

Small revisions, I bolded them this time. I think the first one was what OSS was refering too, and I didn't use "unhearable" so I'm assuming it was the other poster.

I used "that" instead of "this." I used "this" earlier in the sentence, think it would be too repetitve.


Quote:
It’s tempting to write this project off as Leviathan Jr. ™; the moods explored and the general soundscape of the album both bear a strong resemblance to many of the songs from “The Tenth Sub Level of Suicide.” Indeed, the whole album is deeply rooted in the sort of hellishly cold depression depicted on Leviathan’s debut, and at first I thought this was an evolution of the Leviathan sound. However, much of the material was recorded either before the Leviathan debut or alongside it. In this light, I suppose Lurker of Chalice is a sort of parallel version of the same vision. LoC is the ambient version of Leviathan, and Leviathan is the black metal version of LoC. Moreover, the difference is more than just one of style—the use of ambience to convey feelings of loneliness proves to be far more effective than Leviathan’s blackened depression. This album is a fine accomplishment for Wrest in two regards.


The chief accomplishment of this album is the richness of its moods, the genuine feeling of it. This is hardly tangible, but it’s there regardless, and that is what separates the album from Leviathan’s debut and what gives it its character. This is Wrest’s Hvis Lyset Tar Oss, his outpouring of emotion. He seems to have put much more spirit into this album than he normally would, and the end result is strangely passionate.

The second of the two successes is easier to grasp and more readily apparent: whatever style of music Wrest’s other projects may play, there is surprisingly little black metal on here. Hell, for that matter there are relatively few songs that are distinctly Metal with a capital M. “Piercing where they Might” is black metal, with the main riff being obviously inspired by the Thorns/Blut Aus Nord school of dissonance; “Minions” sounds like a doom band doing Xasthur; the 7th track is primarily black(ish) and other songs have a moment or two of metal. But despite this, the music is based more on ambient backdrops and rock-ish riffing. “Spectre As Valkerie Is” is an excellent example of both styles, opening with a heavy rock riff before delving into ambient territory. The song progresses into more ambience with softer rock guitar over it (2:40) and excellent use of what I think are movie samples, which are used throughout the rest of the album with frequency.

The ambience found throughout the album is a mix of the aforementioned samples with slow-tempo synth (usually string or choir) accompanied by drones of some sort or another—usually a persistent “whirling” tone that sounds like a cross betwixt choir and string. The bass guitar occasionally steps in to play a big role (the third track in particular), as does the six-string. When it does, it is usually to play rockisms (the aforementioned “Spectre As Valkerie Is”), to play in an ambient fashion (“Paramnesia,” the feedback screeches in “Vortex,” etc), or to assume a more atmospheric/less rockish role (the third track, “Fastened to the Five Points,” pretty much any song with short little single-note riffs).

The atmosphere created here is both familiar and unique; it brings to mind images of lying on the desert floor whilst gazing up at the stars, reminiscing of something that will never be again. It’s an overall pleasing if depressing tone that’s better suited to this style than to Leviathan’s suicidal black metal, and the end result is a purchase-worthy album whichsurpasses Leviathan and much other depressing music out there.
_________________
Quote:
<@failsafeman> if you touch a girl while you're fucking a gorilla, it doesn't count as gay
<@failsafeman> that's a rule

Top
 Profile  
Earthcubed
Peregrinus sine aetate

Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 3:44 am
Posts: 2761
Location: Orocarni
PostPosted: Thu Mar 23, 2006 11:56 pm 
 

I'm just gonna submit it like that. I don't imagine anyone would reject it and revising it so much has made me hate it. ;)
_________________
Quote:
<@failsafeman> if you touch a girl while you're fucking a gorilla, it doesn't count as gay
<@failsafeman> that's a rule

Top
 Profile  
Cynical
Lead Us into Temptation...

Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2004 12:16 am
Posts: 887
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:05 am 
 

Fix the typo you've got in bold.

My issue with the review- you never speak of how the themes/riffs on the album are structured in relation to each other. I've got no idea if it's verse-chorus, riff salad, or fucking sonata form.

Aside from that, you've done a pretty good job at summing up just about everything I hate about Wrest's projects, though.
_________________
Cheeses Priced wrote:
People would rather their money on their own property than forking it over to starving kids in Africa... I guess the solution is to allow people to buy and own Africans.

Top
 Profile  
Earthcubed
Peregrinus sine aetate

Joined: Sun Nov 07, 2004 3:44 am
Posts: 2761
Location: Orocarni
PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:14 am 
 

Cynical wrote:
Fix the typo you've got in bold.

My issue with the review- you never speak of how the themes/riffs on the album are structured in relation to each other. I've got no idea if it's verse-chorus, riff salad, or fucking sonata form.

Aside from that, you've done a pretty good job at summing up just about everything I hate about Wrest's projects, though.


1. I did.

2. If I ever feel like revising it again in a few months, or in the odd chance it gets rejected, I'll do that.

3. :lol: Do you just not like anything depressing?
_________________
Quote:
<@failsafeman> if you touch a girl while you're fucking a gorilla, it doesn't count as gay
<@failsafeman> that's a rule

Top
 Profile  
Cynical
Lead Us into Temptation...

Joined: Wed Jun 02, 2004 12:16 am
Posts: 887
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 12:20 am 
 

Rock riffs mixed with random bullshit never makes for a compelling listen.
_________________
Cheeses Priced wrote:
People would rather their money on their own property than forking it over to starving kids in Africa... I guess the solution is to allow people to buy and own Africans.

Top
 Profile  
oVerCaffeinated
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2004 8:59 am
Posts: 764
Location: Australia
PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 1:32 am 
 

I would like some feedback on my second review submitted to these archives. Tell me if you like it or think it's shit, too long or too short or if the structure needs improving.

Review for Drudkh's The Swan Road

I Eat Swans for Breakfast - 33%

I hold Drudkh’s previous two albums in high regard. They weren’t anything too different or exciting but they had atmosphere. You pop “Autumn Aurora” (for the rest of the review abbreviated to “AA”) in your CD player, layback on your bed and suddenly you’re sitting up against a large tree looking over a lake covered with bright red and yellow leaves. You pop “The Swan Road” (to be abbreviated down to “SR” for the rest of the review) in you CD player and you get nothing.

As you can probably already guess SR is quite a departure from what Drudkh has done in the past. The main difference is there is more variation. Usually more variation is a good thing but in this case it is not. AA created a Trance-like state of mind with its riffs, similar to how Burzum does it, which is all but gone in SR. Instead of flowing tracks we are interrupted with short bursts of speed. This is when the vocals kick in. They are a bit more aggressive than AA which suits the faster sections.

The production also detracts from this album. It is slightly better than AA and does not have the tape-like quality of AA. Probably the most notable difference is the drumming, there’s more of it. Again this is a step in the wrong direction because the minimalist drumming on AA suited the music very well and gave the guitars more room to breath. They play around less with the kick drum on SR too, another red cross to add to the SR report. To end off this disappointing album Drudkh treat us with what sounds to be some kind of traditional Slavonic song. Very interesting but it is unfortunately tacked onto a rather uninteresting album.

The atmosphere from Drudkh is gone and what is left is another plastic disc to throw onto the pile of Black Metal albums you will never listen to again.
_________________
avrlabel wrote:
I think that Darkthrone is long ago shitty.

Top
 Profile  
OlympicSharpshooter
The Universal Magnetic

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 3:24 pm
Posts: 1991
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 7:49 am 
 

Good, concise, and above-all useful review.
_________________
hells_unicorn wrote:
His [OSS] reviewing style sucks in my opinion, [...] and his humor is vapid at best and outright buffoonish at worst.

Top
 Profile  
oVerCaffeinated
Metalhead

Joined: Mon Jun 14, 2004 8:59 am
Posts: 764
Location: Australia
PostPosted: Fri Mar 24, 2006 8:20 am 
 

Thankyou for the feedback. Now there is no hesitation to write more.

EDIT: There's a grammatical error we both missed:

My Review wrote:
You pop “The Swan Road” (to be abbreviated down to “SR” for the rest of the review) in you CD player and you get nothing.


:grumble:
_________________
avrlabel wrote:
I think that Darkthrone is long ago shitty.

Top
 Profile  
KayTeeBee
Veteran

Joined: Thu Jun 17, 2004 4:04 pm
Posts: 2595
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2006 7:11 pm 
 

I wrote this last friday. Any comment/criticism welcome, looking to improve my writing style.

Haemorrhage - Apology for Pathology (90%)





This is how Grindcore should be. Heavy, brutal, short, full of brutal death metal, straightforward, and the thing most bands don't understand: good production. A huge amount of Brutal Death bands think they can get away with shitty riffs and production. Lighten up folks, Death/Grind isn't as simple and/or easy to play as people make it out to be. The spanish band Haemorrhage have been working on their sound for over 10 years now, releasing five full-lengths to date and releasing tons of splits and whatnot throughout the years.

This is the craziest death-infused grind album you've ever heard. Tops Nasum's 'Helvete'. It's just so fucking amazing. Riffs riffs riffs. The band bludgeons out riff after riff of mind-fucking-blowing memorable (that's right memorable, not just random brutality), brutal music. 'Festerfeast' and 'Frenzied Genital Carbonization' instantly come to mind. The production and guitar tone is modern, with just the right amount of old-schoolness that makes me go absolutely crazy. Every instrument has its own sound, you can hear every instrument, the drums aren't just blastbeats (and that's what's really interesting: the drum beats are very noticeable). And the vocals. What the hell? A mix of low, guttural vocals, high-pitched screams a la black metal, you name it. Halfway through 'Surgical Extravaganza'...a solo. Slightly reminiscent of Aborted's latest work, but 10 times heavier and just plain better. The album starts with complete brutality but ends in a semi-melodic tone. Normally, I wouldn't like that, but right here it adds variety.

This is just plain chirurgical madness. It's layered, so it keeps you coming for more. By saying that I don't mean this is overly complex music with tons of influences, nor am I saying this is just plain uninspired modern grindcore/death. The brutal death injections are amazing. Haemorrhage are the new band to watch out. Enter the syndicate of sickness.
_________________
Nazxul wrote:
They are not getting on the site. Ever. Go whine about it on your blog.

Top
 Profile  
OlympicSharpshooter
The Universal Magnetic

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 3:24 pm
Posts: 1991
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Thu Mar 30, 2006 7:26 pm 
 

You seem to have a lot of redundant description there.

"Heavy, brutal, short, full of brutal death metal, straightforward, and the thing most bands..."

" not just random brutality), brutal music."

"Every instrument has its own sound, you can hear every instrument"

The last paragraph is a bit choppy. The thoughts don't seem connected.

" This is just plain chirurgical madness. It's layered, so it keeps you coming for more. By saying that I don't mean this is overly complex music with tons of influences, nor am I saying this is just plain uninspired modern grindcore/death. The brutal death injections are amazing. Haemorrhage are the new band to watch out. Enter the syndicate of sickness."

The bolded line doesn't go anywhere. It says what you're not saying, so you need to say what you are.

Hope this helps ya man!
_________________
hells_unicorn wrote:
His [OSS] reviewing style sucks in my opinion, [...] and his humor is vapid at best and outright buffoonish at worst.

Top
 Profile  
OSheaman
No one cares about your title

Joined: Tue Apr 01, 2003 9:40 pm
Posts: 5565
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2006 5:51 pm 
 

What's up guys, I just wrote my first review in a while again and I might as well open it up to some criticism. I feel like I've really developed a style (although it took a while--I'll be the first to tell you that some of my earlier review are really bad) and I'd like to see how it tranfers to the reader.

http://www.metal-archives.com/review.php?id=108168

Quote:
Better than Songs of Silence, at least - 88%
Written by OSheaman on April 2nd, 2006 [ delete review ]

I mean, it's no Unleashed in the East or Memoires . . . Live (which, in case you're a filthy commie and haven't heard, is Manigance's absolutely mindblowing live album). It's got a lot of Sonata Arctica's less impressive songs as opposed to the rocking stuff on Silence and Ecliptica. And Kakko still sucks at singing.

But it's a definite improvement over Songs of Silence, which was a few songs away from total abortion level. The sound is better, the crowd isn't as retarded, and the feel is overall more exciting and more reminiscent of what a live CD should be--an excited crowd, a band that performs well, and just the proper mix of atmosphere and actual music to create that unique feel that live CDs give (although whoever sings the backup vocals forgot to use his mic or something because I can barely hear that shit). There are a few fuckups where Kakko drops a solo or something, but the band obviously practices a few times before giving the concert. Special attention should be given to Liimatainen who is dead the fuck on in all of his solos and guitar work (8th Commandment is mindblowingly good) and Tommy Portimo who does a great job keeping Kakko on the same page as the rest of the band.

Speaking of Tony Kakko, let's talk about the frontman for a minute. He is without a doubt a very talented keyboardist and has the ability to hit the high notes, as is evident in the studio albums. That said, his performance style sucks. A good frontman knows how to balance the performance with the entertainment--you can jump around and do funny things to the song and get the crowd into it as long as you finally get around to doing the songs and doing them well. Kakko spends so much time trying to get the crowd singing along, attempting vocal ornamentation (ooooAAAAOOOAAAAAOOOOAaaaAAAAAAOOOOHHHHYYEAAHHHHHH) and growls (what the fuck Tony you don't do growls you're the frontman for Sonata Arctica for Christ's sake), and overall trying to be EXCITING that he drops several cues and cheats just about every single high or sustained note he has, and it's really irritating. One of the great parts of Sonata Arctica's music is when Tony nails a high notes and it just sits there and pierces you for a while, but that never happens on the album, to my great disappointment. It's probably a great show to see live since he's so excited all the time, but it doesn't transfer well to the live CD.

That said, it's not nearly as bad as in Songs of Silence, and everything else is so dead on that's it's hard not to at least enjoy this live album. Less of Kakko's bullshit and more asskicking stuff like Mary Lou and Weballergy would have pulled it into the 90's, but it's still an album worth picking up if you're a fan.

Oh, and by the way Tony, you don't need to announce every song before you guys play it. If your dumbass fans don't know Kingdom for a Heart after the first few bars then that's their fault, not yours.

Top
 Profile  
Bloodstone
Metalhead

Joined: Thu Mar 11, 2004 11:48 am
Posts: 431
Location: Sweden
PostPosted: Sun Apr 02, 2006 8:04 pm 
 

Quote:
[ delete review ]


So THAT'S how reviews look to you mods...

Anyways, the review is totally that of your usual style and also highly useful. I'm a huge SA fan myself and will probably be picking that one up myself.
_________________
The promised lands of sand are raised and troths build on tales
From heights I now behold this circus' credo

Top
 Profile  
KayTeeBee
Veteran

Joined: Thu Jun 17, 2004 4:04 pm
Posts: 2595
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Mon Apr 03, 2006 3:13 pm 
 

Thanks OSS. Much appreciated :bow:.
_________________
Nazxul wrote:
They are not getting on the site. Ever. Go whine about it on your blog.

Top
 Profile  
Ragnaviper
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2005 8:17 pm
Posts: 55
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 2:49 pm 
 

Okay, just finished with this one. First review here for me. Some pointers would be nice since there's quite a bit more I'd like to do with it but not sure "what" to do exactly.

Review is for this release.

Quote:
A Glorious Assault on the Senses – 98%

When I say “assault on the senses”, I mean it. As Night Conquers Day is explosive at times. Autumn Leaves gave us a real classic here.

What we have here is a melodic death metal album in the vein of early Arch Enemy with some Slaughter of the Soul-era At the Gates style riffage thrown in occasionally, but done much better. Most of the songs are highlighted by the solos - some of them being just plain godly, especially the one on the title track. The riffs are often pretty good and in vast supply as well but, as is with most melodeath, these riffs are rarely fantastic. The best riffing is on “The Reign Supreme” which starts the album off with a very fast and brutal riff-set that’s covered with an excellent melodic lead, which becomes characteristic of the rest of the album.

As far as musical capabilities go, these guys do their jobs well. The guitarists in particular perform their parts superbly while keeping a strong tone. The bassist (as proven on the previous album) lays down the low end expertly, while occasionally providing something extra like a solo. The drumming is solid as well.

As Night Conquers Day also keeps a very good sense of flow. It really gives the album a sense of direction not achieved by most without seeming too pretentious. On top of that, the production is very clean and all the instruments are well heard (even the bass) and no instrument is overly loud in the mix. Their producer’s works were actually complimented on by the likes of Dan Swanö, so that says something.

Now, does this album have any problems? Well… sort of. Let me explain: The main flaw that plagued this band was the vocalist. He pretty much sounds exactly like Quo Vadis’ vocalist except with a slightly rougher tone. So yeah, he sucks. The only good thing about him is that it’s fairly easy to understand what he’s saying. Fortunately, he doesn’t really take anything away from the music. In fact, the vocals may actually grow on you. He actually has his moments, though they are few. Still, one could only imagine how much more amazing this band would have been with a more proficient vocalist.

However, if the vocals bother you too much, worry not! The band has included not one, but two instrumentals on this release. The first one, “Resigning from Life”, is a guitar solo* backed by some atmospheric keys work. A very relaxing track and works well with the album’s cohesiveness.

*I believe it’s Flemming C. Lund who performed it, though I’m not sure. I heard he did most of the solos here and was the primary writer for the band.

The second one, “The Present Past”, is easily the best thing the band has ever put out and is also the greatest instrumental I’ve heard to date. It starts out with this absolutely unholy riff which becomes the main verse of the song. The chorus riff, while not quite as intense, is much more melodic in nature. This develops a contrast of sorts between the heavier main verse and the more melodic chorus. They do several other things with the formula, such as adding one of the best solos on the album near the end, but I won’t spoil anything else.

This album is a melodeath masterpiece and probably one of the best works in the genre. It’s obviously not for everyone though since it is melodeath. Those who often find this type of music un-listenable should listen to “The Present Past” and if they like it, check the rest of this thing out. If you end up disliking that track, steer clear of As Night Conquers Day and pick up Embraced by the Absolute (a real gem in the death metal genre) instead.

Highlights:
The Present Past
As Night Conquers Day
The Reign Supreme

Top
 Profile  
TheStormIRide
Jesuscop

Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2006 6:45 pm
Posts: 1027
Location: Altoona, PA
PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 3:21 pm 
 

Do you think the vocals detract from the album enough to give it a lower score? I think that having vocals that are not top notch makes it difficult for an album to capture a 98%. Aside from that, it's fairly good to me. A few things I'd suggest is go further into detail about the soloing. What style of soloing, does it sound like anybody else, as you put it fantastic soloing is evident on a lot of albums, so what sets this apart? Also, what are the drums like, just blast-beating, or is there something interesting going on there (you just said "solid") so perhaps what style they are would help clarify. This is definitely a good start!
_________________
Quote:
DON'T GO TO BRAZINDONESIA!!!!!! THEY LIE WITH CLAIM OF BANDS COME TO THERE!!!!!!!!
INDONESIA IS ALWAYS THE YES DECISION!!!!!!! NO TO BRAZIL, INDONESIAN VERY FUCKING YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! \M\\//\

Top
 Profile  
Ragnaviper
Metal newbie

Joined: Fri Oct 14, 2005 8:17 pm
Posts: 55
Location: United States
PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 3:38 pm 
 

TheStormIRide wrote:
Do you think the vocals detract from the album enough to give it a lower score? I think that having vocals that are not top notch makes it difficult for an album to capture a 98%. Aside from that, it's fairly good to me. A few things I'd suggest is go further into detail about the soloing. What style of soloing, does it sound like anybody else, as you put it fantastic soloing is evident on a lot of albums, so what sets this apart? Also, what are the drums like, just blast-beating, or is there something interesting going on there (you just said "solid") so perhaps what style they are would help clarify. This is definitely a good start!


Yeah, I thought my score might be a bit inflated so I'll probably knock it down a couple of points. Like a 95 maybe? I wouldn't say it necessarily harms the quality of the music to an extensive degree, but I can see how it would make the album less enjoyable so it would be a good idea to knock the score a bit.
I'll take your advice on the style of soloing. It would definitely be better to have some comparisons and such.
As far as the drumming goes, I'm not very knowledgable on the subject so I'll try to get a friend to help me out with that.

Cheers man! I'll repost this when I get these revisions done.

Top
 Profile  
TheStormIRide
Jesuscop

Joined: Fri Jan 20, 2006 6:45 pm
Posts: 1027
Location: Altoona, PA
PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 4:52 pm 
 

Sounds good to me! Good luck on the rest.
_________________
Quote:
DON'T GO TO BRAZINDONESIA!!!!!! THEY LIE WITH CLAIM OF BANDS COME TO THERE!!!!!!!!
INDONESIA IS ALWAYS THE YES DECISION!!!!!!! NO TO BRAZIL, INDONESIAN VERY FUCKING YES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! \M\\//\

Top
 Profile  
Opus
Metalhead

Joined: Sun Sep 22, 2002 11:06 am
Posts: 1830
Location: Sweden
PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 6:25 pm 
 

Just a question about the English language in general; are sentences to be kept as short as possible, i.e. the shorter the better?

Top
 Profile  
OlympicSharpshooter
The Universal Magnetic

Joined: Wed Dec 31, 2003 3:24 pm
Posts: 1991
Location: Canada
PostPosted: Fri Apr 07, 2006 7:06 pm 
 

In general, sentences in English are meant to encapsulate one idea. Periods are used to indicate seperation between thoughts. Sentences may be quite long if the thought being expressed is a complex one or if the writer decides to use a lot of words to express his thought, but these run the risk of being considered 'run-on' sentences. Your sentences risk being choppy if you limit them too much, so make sure not to go too far in the other direction either.
_________________
hells_unicorn wrote:
His [OSS] reviewing style sucks in my opinion, [...] and his humor is vapid at best and outright buffoonish at worst.

Top
 Profile  
Peregrin
Cricket Bat of Longinus

Joined: Wed Jul 07, 2004 3:09 am
Posts: 1888
Location: Denmark
PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2006 11:48 am 
 

I just finished writing the first draft of a review for Fireaxe's Lovecraftian Nightmares, a review with which I myself am rather unsatisfied:

Quote:
A flawed masterpiece - 84%

Ah yes, Brian Voth and his one-man band Fireaxe. To many of his fans, the man is none other than the saviour of Metal and his music the best thing since sliced bread. To those accused by aforementioned fans of "just not getting it", an otherwise unremarkable artist who has developed a cult following on the basis of philosophical lyrics, four-hour concept albums, putting his music in the public domain and other gimmicks. As usual, both negative and positive hype distort the truth, which is somewhere between the two extremes - so this review will ignore both and be as objectively as possible.

Genre-wise, Fireaxe is obviously the latest addition to the "kvlt" canon of US Power Metal bands which encompasses such greats as Manilla Road, Cirith Ungol, Omen and Jag Panzer. As an unintentional hammer to the forehead of those who perceive derivativeness as synonymous with a lack of artistic integrity, Fireaxe wears its influences on the sleeve, the most notable of which (at least on this album) is "Awaken the Guardian"-era Fate's Warning - complete with forwardly progressive song structures, an appropiately epic scope and Brian Voth's faux-John Arch falsetto vocals, which apparently have gone on to rival King Diamond and Tim Baker in sheer acquired taste factor.

The album's songs, all based upon poems by H. P. Lovecraft and Octavio Ramos, encompass the whole scope of different song types found upon - ranging from fast Speed Metal (the energetical spirited "Hounds of Tindalos") over restrained ballad-ish stuff ("The Ancient Track" and the melancholical "Despair") to long epics ("Nathicana", "Nemesis", "Whispers in the Night") - not to mention songs which combine several of these styles (eg. the Speed Metal epic "The Outpost"). This variety is definitely one of the album's greatest strengths - there are not two songs which can be mistaken for each other, and as such the risk of excess monotony is minimalized. Of course, varying the songs so much would not be a strength it is here if Brian Voth's songwriting was not as strong and versalite - he can write and play sufficiently powerful riffs, sufficiently soothing acoustic passages and last but not least stitch it together in ways that work. This is Power Metal with enough POWER to deserve the label, especially in the solos which WILL have you want to air-guitar like there is no tomorrow.

In fact, Voth's decision to stay within the æsthetic boundaries of what is considered traditional Heavy Metal might have contributed to the overall strength of the compositions - many bands who want to create something extraordinary and fantastic assume experimentation the only path to that goal, a train of thought which is quite a gamble. Yet, Voth has been wise in sticking to the tried-and-true methods while giving it personal touches of more subtle nature.

The most successful of this is his afore-lauded unique solo style, another of which is amongst the flaws of this masterpiece (well, a partial one); the production which is "fuzzy raw" (a la Burzum) rather than "sharp raw" (a la Manilla Road) - Brian Voth probably wanted a mystical, esoteric and occult feel to the music due to the literally Lovecraftian subject matter, yet the production winds up a bit of a misfire because the esoteric, mystical feel is nowhere as all-pervasive throughout the songwriting as necessary for a production like this. This misfiring production is inexplicably connected to the album's major flaw - namely, that the overall atmosphere is more fantastic and marvellous than nightmarish and dreadful... enough Lovecraftian, but not enough Nightmares. Here, a sharper (but just as raw) production would have been more appropiate, because it would have produced more of a sense of menace (more bite, so to say) and seem less soothing.

Now, the bulk of the preceding paragraph may come across as a bit harsh, but said major misdirection can be forgiven as Voth's personal interpretation of Lovecraft's poems. And that, of course, does not detract from how the fantastic, marvellous dimension of this album is quite effective. As such, it could be said that this album is a thing of beauty in spite of itself.

Even accepting that, however, the album is not perfect. The song "Nightmare Lake" is for the most part effective, but its end comes across as anticlimactic - it comes off as if not enough was done with it, just too much build-up and too little actual punch. This feeling of "not enough was done with this" also surfaces a bit later on in the album, but in much more forgivable forms.


However, far worse cases of ambition exceeding capability exist, and as a whole this is quite the fantastic album of American-style Power Metal.
_________________
Very funny, Scotty. Now beam back my pants.

Top
 Profile  
failsafeman
Digital Dictator

Joined: Wed Sep 01, 2004 8:45 am
Posts: 9725
Location: United States
PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2006 1:56 pm 
 

Peregrin wrote:
I just finished writing the first draft of a review for Fireaxe's Lovecraftian Nightmares, a review with which I myself am rather unsatisfied: (review)


Good review! There are just a number of minor nitpicks I found, for example you need to put a "the" before "aforementioned" near the beginning, and once you use "to" when it should be "too".

One thing that needs work though is the paragraph about the production:

Quote:
The most successful of this is his afore-lauded unique solo style, another of which is amongst the flaws of this masterpiece (well, a partial one); the production which is "fuzzy raw" (a la Burzum) rather than "sharp raw" (a la Manilla Road) - Brian Voth probably wanted a mystical, esoteric and occult feel to the music due to the literally Lovecraftian subject matter, yet the production winds up a bit of a misfire because the esoteric, mystical feel is nowhere as all-pervasive throughout the songwriting as necessary for a production like this. This misfiring production is inexplicably connected to the album's major flaw - namely, that the overall atmosphere is more fantastic and marvellous than nightmarish and dreadful... enough Lovecraftian, but not enough Nightmares. Here, a sharper (but just as raw) production would have been more appropiate, because it would have produced more of a sense of menace (more bite, so to say) and seem less soothing.


Definitely needs editing.
_________________
antonthereaper wrote:
Seriously, why ban me??????? That topic had nothing wrong with it! Theres something wrong with you i can tell you! You're immoral banning of my account! Anyways, i'm creating my own metal arcives.

http://extrememetalencyclopedia.webs.com/

Top
 Profile  
Peregrin
Cricket Bat of Longinus

Joined: Wed Jul 07, 2004 3:09 am
Posts: 1888
Location: Denmark
PostPosted: Sun Apr 09, 2006 5:50 pm 
 

Edited it a bit:

Quote:
A flawed masterpiece - 84%

Ah yes, Brian Voth and his one-man band Fireaxe. To many of his fans, the man is none other than the saviour of Metal and his music the best thing since sliced bread. To those accused by the aforementioned fans of "just not getting it", an otherwise unremarkable artist who has developed a cult following on the basis of philosophical lyrics, four-hour concept albums, putting his music in the public domain and other gimmicks. As usual, both negative and positive hype distort the truth, which is somewhere between the two extremes - so this review will ignore both and be as objectively as possible.

Genre-wise, Fireaxe is obviously the latest addition to the "kvlt" canon of US Power Metal bands which encompasses such greats as Manilla Road, Cirith Ungol, Omen and Jag Panzer. As an unintentional hammer to the forehead of those who perceive derivativeness as synonymous with a lack of artistic integrity, Fireaxe wears its influences on the sleeve, the most notable of which (at least on this album) is "Awaken the Guardian"-era Fate's Warning - complete with forwardly progressive song structures, an appropiately epic scope and Brian Voth's faux-John Arch falsetto vocals, which apparently have gone on to rival King Diamond and Tim Baker in sheer acquired taste factor.

The album's songs, all based upon poems by H. P. Lovecraft and Octavio Ramos, encompass the whole scope of different song types found upon - ranging from fast Speed Metal (the energetical spirited "Hounds of Tindalos") over restrained ballad-ish stuff ("The Ancient Track" and the melancholical "Despair") to long epics ("Nathicana", "Nemesis", "Whispers in the Night") - not to mention songs which combine several of these styles (eg. the Speed Metal epic "The Outpost"). This variety is definitely one of the album's greatest strengths - there are not two songs which can be mistaken for each other, and as such the risk of excess monotony is minimalized. Of course, varying the songs so much would not be a strength it is here if Brian Voth's songwriting was not as strong and versalite - he can write and play sufficiently powerful riffs, sufficiently soothing acoustic passages and last but not least stitch it together in ways that work. This is Power Metal with enough POWER to deserve the label, especially in the solos which WILL have you want to air-guitar like there is no tomorrow.

In fact, Voth's decision to stay within the æsthetic boundaries of what is considered traditional Heavy Metal might have contributed to the overall strength of the compositions - many bands who want to create something extraordinary and fantastic assume experimentation the only path to that goal, a train of thought which is quite a gamble. Yet, Voth has been wise in sticking to the tried-and-true methods while giving it personal touches of more subtle nature.

The most successful of this is his afore-lauded unique solo style, another of which is amongst the flaws of this masterpiece (well, a partial one); the production which is "fuzzy raw" (a la Burzum) rather than "sharp raw" (a la Manilla Road) - Brian Voth probably wanted a mystical, esoteric and occult feel to the music due to the literally Lovecraftian subject matter. However, the production winds up a bit of a misfire because the esoteric, mystical feel is nowhere as all-pervasive throughout the songwriting as necessary for a production like this.

This misfiring production is inexplicably connected to the album's major flaw - namely, that the overall atmosphere is more fantastic and marvellous than nightmarish and dreadful... enough Lovecraftian, but not enough Nightmares. Here, a sharper (but just as raw) production would have been more appropiate, because it would have produced more of a sense of menace (more bite, so to say) and seem less soothing.

Now, the bulk of the preceding paragraph may come across as a bit harsh, but said major misdirection can be forgiven as Voth's personal interpretation of Lovecraft's poems. And that, of course, does not detract from how the fantastic, marvellous dimension of this album is quite effective. As such, it could be said that this album is a thing of beauty in spite of itself.

Even accepting that, however, the album is not perfect. The song "Nightmare Lake" is for the most part effective, but its end comes across as anticlimactic - it comes off as if not enough was done with it, just too much build-up and too little actual punch. This feeling of "not enough was done with this" also surfaces a bit later on in the album, but in much more forgivable forms.


However, far worse cases of ambition exceeding capability exist, and as a whole this is quite the fantastic album of American-style Power Metal.
_________________
Very funny, Scotty. Now beam back my pants.

Top
 Profile  
subjugator
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2005 3:18 pm
Posts: 34
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Mon Apr 10, 2006 1:48 pm 
 

Flame, bash, you know the usual.:wink:
---------------------------------------------------

I have started on the good side of the doom metal genre, as I was recommended the band St. Vitus on another internet forum as a good band to begin the genre with. I am pleasantly surprised this time, and will continue to immense myself within the crushing experience of doom metal. However it should be known that this release is not perfect. What good would a review be that doesn’t analyze the faults of a piece of art?

This release seems to want to alienate itself from the fakeness of the world that surrounds it, and open itself up only to those who have a similar mind as the creators of this work of art. The members seem to want to lose themselves in their own universe, and live according to only how they see fit and not give in to the temptations of the crowd. Another way they show this is by showing how they use drugs to escape from reality. This may not be the most positive way, but it seems to work for them.

Feeling like you’ve been left in a desolate barren land with nothing around for miles, St. Vitus crushes you with the bareness of desert landscapes and flowing down a never ending psychedelic river of the conscience when they are noodling around on their guitars without any real riffs, and just dissonant melodies.

The last part is where this release seems to fall flat. The noodling just seems to go on without any real sense or direction and seems to last infinite. It would be a wise decision to remove these obstructing articles and just use these IMMENSE and insanely catchy riffs that carry the song on fine without mucking up the flow.

The vocals remind me of a man tormented from living in this world so he must howl out his emotions and pain to express the rage that he feels at himself and everyone else, but mostly at himself. He wishes he could disappear “into the void.” These lyricist blame mankind as whole for the trouble that we are in.

As a heavily emotional and rebellious piece of work (what great metal isn’t?), it refuses to conform to society standards and therefore it lifts the individual over the crowd. My personal favorite tracks are the title track, “ H.A.A.G” and the Black Flag cover.

Top
 Profile  
Peregrin
Cricket Bat of Longinus

Joined: Wed Jul 07, 2004 3:09 am
Posts: 1888
Location: Denmark
PostPosted: Thu Apr 13, 2006 2:59 am 
 

subjugator wrote:
This release seems to want to alienate itself from the fakeness of the world that surrounds it, and open itself up only to those who have a similar mind as the creators of this work of art. The members seem to want to lose themselves in their own universe, and live according to only how they see fit and not give in to the temptations of the crowd. Another way they show this is by showing how they use drugs to escape from reality. This may not be the most positive way, but it seems to work for them.


More should be done with this paragraph - ie. explain why you interpretate the album that way.
_________________
Very funny, Scotty. Now beam back my pants.

Top
 Profile  
subjugator
Metal newbie

Joined: Wed Oct 12, 2005 3:18 pm
Posts: 34
Location: United States of America
PostPosted: Thu Apr 13, 2006 9:27 pm 
 

Is that all that's a problem with that review?

Top
 Profile  
Peregrin
Cricket Bat of Longinus

Joined: Wed Jul 07, 2004 3:09 am
Posts: 1888
Location: Denmark
PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 2:51 am 
 

It's certainly the only big problem I can identify with it. I have not bothered to check the grammar.
_________________
Very funny, Scotty. Now beam back my pants.

Top
 Profile  
Peregrin
Cricket Bat of Longinus

Joined: Wed Jul 07, 2004 3:09 am
Posts: 1888
Location: Denmark
PostPosted: Fri Apr 14, 2006 4:01 pm 
 

Here is my first draft for a review of Adramelech's Pure Blood Doom... I am not really satisfied with it; I feel it goes too far into overinterpretation territory.

Quote:
Death Metal for the thinking and the feeling - 85%


Adramelech's main clame to fame is perhaps the sharing of several members with Demigod, which has lead some people to view Adramelech as the poor man's Demigod. Yet, that is only the half truth - while there are similarities, Adramelech are quite their own beast if not exactly being as unique as Demigod.

The album "Pure Blood Doom" roughly belongs in the same niche of the Death Metal genre where the likes of Massacra and The Chasm also dwell - in other words, the riffs are in the style of 1980s proto-Death Metal, but the song structures (the music's "skeletons", so to speak) are far more complex than those of the genre's progenitors.

In the case of "Pure Blood Doom", the structures are epic - the focus is not as much upon aggression and chaos as upon an epic forwards-moving direction which acts like a scaffold for the furious, aggressive riffing.

This combination of a dynamic wholeness and in-your-face expressions is perhaps where the main similarity with Demigod is, but where Demigod is esoteric and mystical, Adramelech is militaristic, complete with Slayer-esque use of Nazi imagery. The tone of the album is aggressive and destructive, if so in a disciplined rather than feral way, rather than introspective and metaphysical.

"Pure Blood Doom" is more than just epic militaristic Death Metal, it is also clearly Blackened Death Metal as it incorporated many elements which are commonly considered hallmarks of BM rather than DM.

First, "Pure Blood Doom" has a rather mythic dimension coming from both the lyrics, o the production which manages to create a degree of dark ambience, eg. with the "fuzzy" guitar tone which most frequently is deliberately deployed by atmospheric Black Metal bands in order to give a soothing, immersing feel to the music.

A more easily explainable mark of the Black Metal influence upon "Pure Blood Doom" is how the mind instinctively listens to it - whereas most Death Metal is to be listened to analytically due to its conjuration of chaos through complexity, Black Metal is usually to be approached from an emotionally dominated point of view (at least in the personal experience of this reviewer).

"Pure Blood Doom", interestingly enough, is to be listened to as emotionally as analytically - the ambient, mythic trappings of the album's style and the catchy riffs allow the listener to let himself/herself fall into its currents and directed away into its world, but the structure and discipline directing the album also engages the analytical mind. From a psychological point of view, this fact speaks VERY highly in the favour of "Pure Blood Doom" since it stimulates both halves of the brain equally.


What all this adds together to is a listening experience which is quite the artistic achievement - at once, it expresses, appeals to the baser, unrefined and ultimately uncontrollable emotional/instinctual side of the human psyche while proceeding to engage the logical part of the mind. It unites sides of the psyche which are frequently considered polar opposites, and that is no easy task.
_________________
Very funny, Scotty. Now beam back my pants.

Top
 Profile  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Reply to topic Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 ... 59  Next


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Empyreal and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

 
Jump to:  

Back to the Encyclopaedia Metallum


Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group