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Torn apart but still almost perfectly executed - 84%

kluseba, September 25th, 2011

This record is a diversified good average album by Senmuth that mixes several styles in a more or less progressive way in the end.

The album kicks off with some great new age melodies and some majestic cello sounds that slightly remind me of Apocalyptica without sounding like a copy of it but rather like a spectre of a possible experimentation that those Finnish experimental metal masterminds have never done in their career so far. The best example for this is the surprisingly strong and intense opener “The Entry (Into Life)” that may seem short but sounds already diversified, intense and convincing.

With the fourth track “The Destination (Of Dreams)”, the album goes away from the spiritual, calm and inspiring new age and touches some more rhythm orientated music somewhere between industrial ambient music and atmospheric space sounds. Some hypnotizing piano melodies are added to the cello sounds and we also hear some great acoustic and electric guitar work by Senmuth who really seems to have improved his skills on this instrument over the years.

Towards the end of the record, Senmuth progressively delivers some more and mostly oriental folk sounds and ethno orientated ambient tracks that lead towards an amazing ending of the album with the gripping, entertaining and epic “The Dream (Of A Seeker)” and the more relaxing album closer “The End (Of A Cycle)”.

While the mixture of these three styles is quite interesting, entertaining and resumes pretty much anything a fan likes about Senmuth, I feel that the transitions could have been worked out more precisely. The progression of the three genres doesn’t always sound logic to me and the record feels a little bit torn apart and sometimes even pointless. I also feel that the music doesn’t fit with the topic of the record. The first part makes me think of religious and mythological topics, the second part of the short reprise of a space odyssey and the last part seems to introduce an exotic oriental culture to the listener. This simply doesn’t stick together. Senmuth could have elaborated each part a little bit more and better and might have created three excellent albums instead of one very good one.

Nevertheless, the music itself sounds really fresh and especially the new age parts in the beginning have a certain kind of magic and sound better to me than any new age approach Valery Av has tried out before while the space tracks can’t mess with “Great Opposition Of Mars”, “RXG-242-11” and “Oracle Octave” and while the folk tracks are not as gripping and convincing as on “Swadhisthana”, “Ra Dhi” or even the last record “Weird”. This means that there is one almost excellent on this record that would maybe even merit a ninety-five percent rating at least as well as two good but not great ones that I would maybe still honour with a good seventy-five to eighty percent rating as those parts are nothing new and groundbreaking but still very well executed. The final result is logically the average of the three parts. Once again, this album may be interesting as a diversified introduction to a new fan to the world of Senmuth but might not be a fan’s favourite on the other side. I still happen to listen to this album over and over again instead of picking up three different releases that focus on each different part of this album and consider this album as a very good Senmuth release somewhere near the average rating I would give to the entire discography of this unique project.

Senmuth - Lotos Prityazheniya - 60%

ConorFynes, January 6th, 2011

A more melodic and composed album than most of the mellow, ethnically inspired albums that Russian one man project Senmuth has created, 'Lotos Prityazhenya' sees Valery Av taking his now very familiar staple style, and adding some symphonic undertones to give the album a slightly fresh sound. However, as it stands; this album suffers from a very weak sense of album flow, as well as the dry issues that have plagued the greater deal of releases from this composer.

While many of the albums by Senmuth are either focused around Middle-Eastern or Indian culture exclusively, 'Lotos Prityazhenya' brings several cultures together in a soothing melange of sounds, even bringing some European-leaning styles such as the medieval madrigal, and the cello (or at least, a synthesized computer variation) to the table, making for an album that while very distinctly a Senmuth venture, has a little more variety to it than one might be used to from this artist.

Some very mellow electronic tones give the album an almost 'fairy tale' vibe to it, but while some tracks (particularly the oriental-tinged 'Сновидение [Стремлений]') are very soothing and do their designated function as well as one could hope for, many of the songs lack a memorable aspect to them, making for a somewhat shallow listening experience. However, as with all Senmuth albums, Valery Av has miraculously managed to throw in quite a few subtle details into the mix, so that one would be hard-pressed to find all of them after a single listen.

'Lotos Prityazhenya' is a soothing, atmospheric, and at times even pastoral venture from Senmuth, but it rarely exceeds the limits of mere ambient music, making it a pleasant album, but nothing more.