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Staggering... - 98%

Justin_Bork, May 9th, 2005

In terms of the most elite in Melodic Death, I personally believe Mors Principium Est has taken the throne from Dark Tranquillity on this album. What they've done here is an amazing, diverse and progressive peice of Melodic Death, even more so than Dark Tranquillity does (and a lot less repetetive). Jackhammer drums and riffage, amazing leads, moving key work, and vocals more deep and harsh than Stanne is known for.

There's so much going on with this record, it must be listened to fully, to understand what I'm saying here. When MPE is hammering away with speed and thrash tendencies, it sounds like chaos, just brutality, and when they lighten up for some lead work or soloing, it makes the speed bits sound that much more harsh.

The key work here is quite interesting in it's diversity. You hear everything from black metal to neo-prog in the keys, psuedo techo/electronic included. The keys work very well and give the album this wide open sound. Without them, I don't think the album would be as amazing as it is. MEP are from Finland, but don't be expecting christmas keyboards like Children of Bodom and Norther like to use. This albums keys are amazing and give it atmosphere and an epic feel.

The drum work is great, relentless and crushing. Matches whatever the other instruments are doing quite well. The gutiars are heavy and crush and again, are relentless, the frequent lead work is excellent as well. Bass is pretty standard, lost in the production most of the time. Vocals are great, not too loud, not to soft, harsh and cold, haunting female vocals show up in a few spots as well which only add to this albums already unbelievable sound. The production isn't raw or cloudly, nor is it clean or crisp, but it works and everything (aside from the bass) sounds amazing.

So here you have it, Mors Principium Est have crafted a gorgeous album, with as much grace and melody as there is chaos and brutality. Go get it, you know you want it.

Recommended Listening: 'Pure' , 'Two Steps Away', 'Altered State Consciousness', 'The Unborn' 'Fragile Flesh'