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We all know about Summoning. The Tolkien worship band. Now who doesn't love Tolkien? Who doesn't love epic sounding metal? Who doesn't love both of those together? If you say you don't your lieing. I had high hopes for this release. Its amazing and interesting, but not something that leaves a big impression.
Well to start it off the synths can get bland and repetitive. The riffs sound like weak tremolo picked riffs. The vocals aren't something impressive. In fact that weak tremolo picking and pooly done harsh vocals in about the only thing black metal with this release (not that its a bad thing). The drums are well, just plain annoying most of the time.
The songs themselves showcase some amazing muscianshipand creativity. They aren't the most technical thing in the world either. Several songs seem to drag on and on to (Lugburz is the best example of this). Now the keyboard usage in the songs is what amazes me the most with this duo. Not every part played by it is perfect or entertaining, but the parts that are entertaining are simply incredible and breath taking.
Overall this release is a good effort. Its the first thing from their more ambient and epic sounding stuff. It isn't perfect (its far from perfect), but it isn't the worst thing in the world either. Its sort of like the pre-mature verison of the amazing stuff this duo will release later on in their career.
The songs on here that are worth checking out are, "The Passing of Grey Company", "Orthanc", and "Dagor Brogollach".