Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2020
Encyclopaedia Metallum

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

Privacy Policy

A Hit and Miss Effort - 74%

Falconsbane, November 7th, 2003

Over the years, metal fans have been more than a little susceptible to what I call "Christ Syndrome," the near Messianic cult status which fanboys occasionally attach to their idols. For various reasons, but mostly due to sheer prolificacy, such a cult of personality has been built up over the years around the person of Dan Swano. The prevailing "Dan can do no wrong" attitude has created a reputation for Edge of Sanity that really isn't borne out by reality. The band's early recordings were decidedly second tier death metal, solid releases yes, but essentially derivative of Entombed, Carnage and Dismember, while "Crimson" and the band's subsequent recordings were pitiful novelty rock in superficially "death metal" clothing.

"Purgatory Afterglow" marked the one genuine attempt by Edge of Sanity to make a lasting mark in death metal, and while it doesn't entirely succeed, it is by no means a failure. Where it succeeds is in fusing a pared down Stockholm death metal aesthetic with the spontaneous, anthemic and subtly epic ethos of Angel Witch. The result is accessible yet intellectually rewarding death metal (Twilight, Of Darksome Origin, Silent, Velvet Dreams and The Sinner and the Sadness). Where it fails, it descends into the purely saccharine (Blood-Colored and Black Tears, which wouldn't seem out of place on a Three Doors Down record) or a senseless jockcore stomp (Song of Sirens). While "Purgatory Afterglow" is never going to stand alone as a classic, it is ultimately a rewarding and worthwhile album if you can pick it up used.