without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
After Secret of the Runes, Therion were kind of losing it. Lemuria/Sirius B showed the first signs of a downfall, while Gothic Kabbalah and Sita Ahra confirmed that. In fact, after hearing Sita Ahra (which was a very hard task to do, believe me), I basically considered Therion to be another one of those bands who keep getting worse (*cough* Sirenia, anyone?). When I read that the upcoming Therion album was going to consist of covers of '60s pop music, I thought that they really hit rock bottom. Thankfully, I was very, very wrong. Even if you cannot understand French, this album is highly enjoyable.
The vocals take me back to the Secret of the Runes era. There is no choir and vocals are not all operatic. I thoroughly enjoyed the vocals on this album. There's been a great deal of improvement over Sita Ahra in this department, where the vocals just sound forced and cold (and inaudible at some points). Musically, this album is like a mix of old and new Therion. Think of it as a mix of Deggial and Sita Ahra, with greater focus on orchestrations overall.
What I enjoyed most about the album, apart from the fact that it's their most enjoyable album in 11 years, is the whole idea. I mean, you would never expect an operatic metal band to release a full-length album with nothing but 60s French pop songs, would you? It's genius if you ask me. Not to mention the fact that they pull the whole thing off brilliantly.
There isn't one weak track on the album and I assure you, you will not want to skip a single track. The highlight of the album, in my opinion, is Mon Amour, Mon Ami. I'm hooked on this version of the song, it's perfect really. The original track itself was really good, and Therion's version added that extra umph.
If you're new to the band, go to this right after Secret of the Runes. A great release.
(Originally written for amazon.co.uk)