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Majestic Indeed.... - 85%

RickJames, June 5th, 2006

I snagged this one for a small price from a small bunch of cds a friend was selling. I had no idea that Among Majestic Ruin was Morgion’s first release, so I thought I was sure to have some interesting listening ahead. And indeed, it’s a stimulating listen.

The landscapes created by grandiose songwriting brings along some interesting interpretations. “In Ashen Tears” brings to me some vista of an ill-fated farewell or some epic failing of the hero’s prototype, e.g. Oedipus. “Travesty” does more than its fair share, moving from one horizon to another, with short, yet interesting changes here and there. I think my favorite track is “Basking Under a Blacksun Dawning,” with the perfect combination of simple yet epic death metal riffs amongst an even more grandiose musical milieu.

This album is atmospheric just as others are. However, this release is much more death/doom than their other releases. The music could be compared and contrasted to the likes of Obscured or some of the earliest Amorphis releases in its epic/atmospheric death metal, although this one’s a bit rough around the edges. I think the production suits the death and doom sound, in any case. The songwriting is excellent, and maintains a significant ability for the band to transition between death and doom, interestingly at times melding them together as well. The atmospheric nature also works as a transition in many cases. Ed Parker’s keys are used very tastefully; the second track “In Ashen Tears” is a well-rounded example. The music is average in technicality, but with what musicianship they display surely heralds the band in its beautiful, yet melancholic nature.

This album is fairly good, although it seems like it should’ve been an EP. It’s too short for my taste, but it exceeds in quality more than quantity in this case.

Dark, gloomy and BRILLIANT. - 80%

Snxke, July 28th, 2004

A band that yoinks their name from a fantasy series is normally not the sort of band I would be quick to support but Morgion are a death-doom fest that cannot be easily ignored. This startling produced record is thick with heavy bass-oriented riffs, clear leadwork and rolling-thunder drumming that brings life to a shocking slow rhythm section. Morgion craft longer epics that slide between mid-paced Sabbath groove (not Pantera groove) and slower doom pieces that make one think of Eyes of Ligeia. Solid chops, grunting (but not silly) vocals and well planned movements help one get into the darker mindset that is intially clouded by the strange-fantasy aspect.

There isn't one clunker on this black morass of doom, in fact it's one of the few CD's I play from end to end without needing to look at the insert to figure which songs I wish to skip. This is incredibly rare, as few bands can keep my attention beyond the rare classic song they drag up. While few of these songs stand as "metal classics" on their own...the flow of the album lets the songs wind in and out like a story (though tasteful, the music - not the lyrics- tells the story here)...I am truly impressed with the thematic musical narration presented here.

Morgion are unsung heroes in many ways...but they've mixed the best of death and doom metal and get my full endorsement. I suggest that you pick this up, possibly more than any other CD they have released since it's the most accessible Morgion effort.

BUY OR DIE!!!