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who would have guessed - 81%

thedeityrises, September 24th, 2005

The release of this album finally comes... so I go and buy it... and listen to it with extremely high expectations. Unfortunatly, this album seemed to have something missing. It's hard to pinpoint, so I'll just go into the different instruments.

Guitar- Guitar is used considerably more, and is put into the band a lot more than in the previous two albums. It's not used in any one style, just used a lot more. I guess the way to put it is that Arcturus must be trying to show their black metal roots.

Vocals- As you all know, Arcturus got a new vocalist ICS Vortex of Dimmu Borgir and Borknagar fame. The sound... well it definetly is good, just seems to not be up to par with Garm. He also does a bit of growling as well. Now the lyrics are definetly a step down from previous releases. They definetly could be worse, but they could be a whole lot better. They just seem to have lost that thing that Garm had somehow. Not bad though, Vortex is probably the only person who could replace him.

Bass- Probably saying the same thing as the guitar here. Relativly average.

Drums- Maybe the strongest part of the album. Hellhammer does a great job of using his drum kit as usual. Truly top notch.

Keyboards- This could be where they went wrong. With the first song, you notice "Where have all those cool keyboard riffs gone?" The answer is the amount of guitar used. Now this album is not devoid of keyboards, and the parts where the keyboard was used were really well done, but there just wasn't enough, at least for Arcturus.

This album in general has a darker feel to it. Though not quite a return to La Masquerade Infernale. I'm not sure, this album just didn't stick with me. If this hadn't been Arcturus, chances are i would have rated this 70. I got bored with this album fairly quickly. If this album has a strong song, it's probably Moonshine Delirium. A good way to summarize this cd is that I was comparing this album to other bands, which with Arcturus isn't a good sign. Other users on this site may disagree with me, but it really seems like Arcturus has lost their touch.

By the way, I am a huge Arcturus fan, they are probably one of my top bands. Which is saying something. So I regret making this review, but its just the truth.

This album may be worth listening though if you are looking for something darker or similar to Borknagar, and more guitar orientated compared to the previous two releases.