Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2021
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

Great, but the singing ruins it. - 75%

The_Ghoul, June 22nd, 2008

I love all forms of metal. I can dig black metal like Black Dawn, Setherial, Mutiilation, Antaeus, Dawn, and the like, as well as more traditional projects like Symphony X. So naturally, I was drawn to Arkha Sva when my friend introduced me to Gloria Satanae.

The first thing I noticed is the very anguished melodies. I don't mean anguished in an emo sense, but rather, in a misanthropic and masochistic way. The pain shines through, and the melodies are both tragic and blackening of the soul. The drumming is above average; it keeps the beat and doesn't partake in wankery, which would've ruined this style of black metal, but never really does anything memorable either, sticking to mid-paced blastbeats and double bass rolls reminiscent of Under a Funeral Moon.

The vocalist seems to be both great and terrible. His screeches are blood-curdling, his mid-ranged growls deathly, and his grunts sickening. He exhibits great control over his voice, which surprises me to hear his normal speaking voice on one of the songs (he sounds very asian). The one thing that gets me is the singing. Now, I don't mind falsettoes in black metal. If you can pull off Eric Adams style screeches after shredding your vocal chords for a half hour, then more power to you. But they do not sound good here. The tonality is way off, and most times he sounds like a chick about to orgasm, which would be very arousing IF IT WAS AN ACTUAL CHICK SINGING, which is not the case here, as it sounds too fake to even be that. Short of getting singing lessons and learning how to shatter glass the right way, I'd suggest he knock off that shit and stick to the more tenor range of singing, or get rid of the singing entirely.

While that is a minor part of Arkha Sva's sound, and the singing occupies a tiny portion of the album, it's still enough to render several songs unlistenable save for extreme usage of the skip button. Which is sad, because the songs here are some of the greatest black metal songs I've heard, possessing a tragic misery not found in everyday run of the mill black metal.