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Well...what can I say about this album? This statement pretty much embodies what I feel about Lost to Antiquity. The material here is pretty solid, but that's all it really is. Imagine eating a nice slab of meat, perfectly cooked - leaving just enough moisture without being to raw or overcooked. The experience is rather enjoyable until you realize that you forgot to add very much seasoning to the son of a bitch. A listening session with this album can be very much likened to that. Whether you like a (for the most part) straightforward black metal experience or not is entirely up to you... Onward to the album review:
First of all I would like to point out the production. This very much exemplifies my steak analogy. It's not too raw and not to crisp - kind of in the middle, where everything is audible (albeit slightly muddy). All the instruments are mixed at an even volume, so all the instruments and vocals all share the limelight. I would, however, like to point out that with that they managed to exceed your average black metal band in the bass department. You can hear it throughout and does wonders with adding counter-melodies and is eerily similar to the way Autopsy's bass sounded off of Severed Survival. If you heard that album - the bass demanded to be heard, snapping wildly amidst the musical torrent. The production is sufficient overall, and I think actually suits the bands targeted sound.
The members of the band are sufficient at what they do. Like I mentioned early on, the bass is pretty audible and it played rather well. The bassist does tend to throw in some cool counter melodies and tends to add a bit of impact to the riffs, given its presence. The guitarists definitely know how to set the pace. They play everything from razor sharp tremolo riffing to ground shaking chug riffs, that sound to me at times like Swedish death metal. In addition a lot of the songs go through interesting breaks - i.e. the middle of One Above All - the song goes into some doomy dirge from a hyper-speed blackened attack. Near the end of said procession movement it ends a with a riff using what I think is a wah-wah pedal; it then resumes aforementioned attack. So the guitarists definitely knows how to mix up. Next, there's the vocalist. He does mostly a high pitched shriek throughout to album, that comes off a bit nasally. The only other vocal trick he has up his leave is a semi-low growl that could somewhat register as a mid-growl for others. Not really anything exciting in the vocal department, but again... Sufficient. The drumming is... For the most part straight forward blasting, with occasional tom rolls and some toying with the cymbals. The drummer does however, takes more liberties with the cymbals than the average black metal band - for that I give him kudos.
All these aspects do sum up to a pretty decent listen, but like I said the experience is a little dull. I mean you do have various breaks in the music. There is a down-tempo song in there (that one being Erosion), so it does account for the ability to branch out. It’s just that amidst all the fury and grimness there are really no outstanding riffs to be heard. You pretty much have a mix of chunky riffs and black metal tremolo assault, all of which are sort of clichéd and can really can be attributed to any black or death metal band out there. I honesty can’t point out too many highlights (aside from the title track - this one actually really does have a lot of cool dynamic changes in it) as many of the compositions do blur together in this album do blend together. The listening experience is filled with some ooh and ahh moments - slow beaks, out of place riffs, occasional acoustic and piano parts…the problem is that even these are done in a very passive manner and seem to be put in there to give the experience a little more viability. Ultimately what you have here is a band that could put out some potentially memorable stuff ( if they exploited the use of dynamics more). This album is not recommended for anyone looking for a groundbreaking experience. If you’re into something entirely conventional with no frills -this may suit you.