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Hades, changing the name into Hades Almighty, changed also their approach to black metal. In the past they used to play raw, doomy black metal with some viking elements like choruses or few other things. Now their black metal is more experimental, obscure and “alternative”. I don’t know why they changed, but this CD is the first one I bought in their discography and I like it.
At first I liked it for the cover artwork and then I started to love it for the music. Actually, the cover artwork is one of the most beautiful/gloom things ever done in my opinion and the music is simply like it…not often we can find the perfect combination between artwork and music: this is a rare case. The intro is made of female choruses and doom atmosphere. “Dream Traveller” is mid-paced, long and atmospheric with great, suffered vocals. The Viking touch is always present but in a different form, with more experimentalism.
All the tracks are very long and mostly mid-paced, pointing on the atmosphere: truly weird and “far”, like in a ritual. Check out the odd tempo parts/riff on “Carnival Blaspheme” with dissonant guitar lines/solos. One of the strangest things ever heard in black metal. If you search for faster parts you can enjoy “Nemesis” that contains some tremolos too and distorted solos. “Garden Of Chaos” is really obscure and melodic. Some acoustic guitar arpeggios give a more epic/Viking touch to an already very atmospheric and surreal song.
The melodies of “A Ballad Of Death and "Obsession” are really dreaming and spacey with quite fast bass drum. Anyway, the arpeggios are the most important element in it with some excellent clear choirs: very epic. Check the martial “Warcry”, with great vocals…so screamed , followed by truly heavy tempo. The more acoustic middle break is great, just in the background and the vocative final part.
A perfect album to celebrate in 1999 the coming of a new millennium made of obscurity and totally lifeless. One of the gloomiest albums ever done in black metal. True dark art.