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Wow. What can I say about this album? It’s been one of my all time favorite albums since I discovered it around the time “Leaving Your Body Map” was released. Many of you know that “Bath” is the companion album to “Leaving Your Body Map” as the album art was reversed and they run the same length. Though these albums are similar, I believe that “Bath” is the “softer” counterpart to the “heavier” “Leaving Your Body Map.”
“Bath” takes me on a journey, from soft almost symphonic tunes to brutal yet complex semi-death metal, to acoustic arrangements, to Prog/Doom metal. One thing that’s good about the heavy parts of this album is that they’re almost all extremely complex; some using odd time signatures, some with thick atmospheric synths and guitar effects, its quite hard to explain, but you’ll understand after listening to it.
The “softer” songs include Heaven and Weak, Marid's Gift of Art, and Geography. Heaven and Weak starts off slow, somber, and includes a nice bass line, pianos, acoustic guitars, and very atmospheric electric guitars, but towards the end of the track it speeds up to what I think is a very groove-oriented verse, using an odd time signature. This is by far one of my favorite tracks on the album.
Marid's Gift of Art, its an ok song, though I don’t think it stands out.
Geography is a totally acoustic song, very angst ridden, but it’s a nice departure, and ends “Bath” well.
The “heavier” songs on this album aren’t really all that heavy, but that’s a matter of opinion for everyone. These tracks are They Aren't All Beautiful, The Ferryman, Girl With a Watering Can, and Birth Pains of Astral Projection.
They Aren't All Beautiful is a song that doesn’t really fit well on the album, it sounds like they where trying to venture out in to some death metal type stuff with this song, and though it doesn’t fit in very well, its still an awesome song. It’s not all that complex until the breakdown, but that doesn’t say much.
The Ferryman is an average song. I think the organs at the beginning are a bit much, but I think it fits well with the rest of the song, give it a “gothic-like” feel to it, but maybe that’s just the female vocals, which are very beautiful.
The Girl with a Watering Can reminds me of The Ferryman, and is an above average song, mostly for the guitar solo towards the end.
Birth Pains of Astral Project is by far the BEST song on the album. This song pretty much fueled my interest for MotW/Kayo Dot. It has everything in the song like organs, doom metal passages, screams and clean singing, and exceptional guitar work. The only thing I missed was an acoustic guitar (that I noticed at least). The best thing about this song has to be the guitars. The guitars in this song are complex, but are unnoticeable until the intro-solo and the outro-solo. The only bad thing I have to say about this is the doom metal part is a little long, and starts to get boring, but that happens often when songs are 10+ minutes.
Maudlin of the Well also likes to indulge in instrumental songwriting. This isn’t always a good idea, but they all add to the album.
The Blue Ghost/Shedding Qliphoth starts off simple, and gets very atmospheric and dense by the end.
Interlude I is one of my favorite tracks on this album as well, hard to describe, though its very melodic and the electric guitars work well with the acoustic guitars and the exotic drumming and bass.
Interlude II is pretty much a bass like with sounds of water. It makes me feel like I’m fishing. Yay.
The bad parts:
Lyrics – They get pretty angst-ridden, at least too much for my tastes.
Boring – Some of the songs get boring after listening to the album a couple of times, maybe it’s the length, but I doubt it.
Length – I normally don’t find length to be such a bad thing, but I think they tacked a lot of it on just for atmosphere.
Stand out Tracks:
Heaven and Weak
Birth Pains of Astral Projection