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The first time I heard this album, I was blown away. I sat in a feverish stupor for 75 minutes, letting the music seep into my very being, and at least another 15 minutes afterwards, trying to recover from what I had just heard. From the opening riffs of The Celestine Prophecy to the dying tones of New World Order, I was in love.
The musicians are all very talented, and they show their prowess in full on this album, even one member leaving would destroy the equilibrium they have now.
Stian Kristoffersen's brilliant drumming, Steinar Krokmo's complex basslines, Ronny Tegner's perfect keyboard soundscape (which does not sound cheap, nor tacky, like some bands I could name) and Jørn Lofstad's extremely skilled guitar-playing (who is quickly becoming one of my favourite guitarists) creates the perfect backdrop for Nils Rue's bombastic and versatile vocals. The first thing which grabbed me was Rue's impressive vocals, he has an extremely diverse range. Lofstad's catchy riffing and solos become more and more apparant as the album progresses, with every riff played interesting and well-planned. Tegner's keyboard plays a large part in the sound which makes Pagan's Mind, and is no way overpowering or out of place.
The lyrics are philosophical with the hint of science-fiction, inspired by the writer Erich von Däniken, and mostly deal with humankind's origins. They are just brilliantly fantastic, and without them, the band would feel almost incomplete - it just fits in perfectly with their sound, especially delivered with such force as Nils Rue does.
It is impossible to choose out the best tracks, all of them are excellent and are fantastic in their own way. If I'd have to recommend one song to a person who had never heard Pagan's Mind before, I would choose Supremacy, Our Kind, which sums up Pagan's Mind completely - high tempo intro with catchy riffs which leads into a slower part, opening with piano, opening for Rue's stunning vocals, which leads to an increase in tempo to the extremely catchy chorus and down again, with their usual philosophical lyrics with the hint of science-fiction.
With not one note sounding false, not one passage feeling redundant, not one moment too long, they've managed to form an almost perfect album. They are wholly original, and are nothing like other Progressive / Power metal bands (which does not mean these bands are bad, but for the progressive genre, many bands do sound similar. On that note, they do borrow some riffs from Dream Theater, but sound nothing like them).
To sum it up, if you are into music at all, you must get this album. While it may appeal more to the power / progressive crowd, I firmly believe anybody who appreciates music will appreciate this. Buy it, download it, get a copy from a friend, whatever you do, get your hands on this.