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Not Really Metal - But A Great Record Nonetheless - 91%

Erin_Fox, October 29th, 2006

It is well known that the members of Green Carnation possess an interest in various, contrasting forms of music. Willingness to attempt a diverse realm of influences has caused the members of Green Carnation to develop into extraordinarily well-rounded musicians.

On this record, the Norwegian group reveals a mellower side of their musically schizophrenic persona that is more akin to a combination of mid-career Pink Floyd fused with the types of melodies displayed on Alice In Chains’ “Jar Of Flies” and “Sap” albums.

Featuring arrangements that are designed touch upon a substantial quantity of varying emotions; “The Acoustic Verses” is a great effort from beginning to end.

Most assuredly mood music, a certain frame of mind is recommended in order to properly perceive the intent behind the somber “Alone”, a song which incorporates an edgy string arrangement or the equally glum and introspective “The Burden Is Mine…Alone”, a track that finds guitarist Tchort and singer Kjetil Nordhus complementing each other in a Page/Plant fashion. Many will be in agreement that the emotive, resounding singing on this record is Nordhaus’ best work to date

Delicate yet haunting, the Nordhaus-penned “Maybe?” features a shimmering break that makes the song more than unique. Excellent dramatic construction leads to wispy, drifting tones giving the track an ethereal quality that makes it one of the best of the record.

Particularly interesting is that these tracks were penned a range of players, yet the album is very cohesive as a singular artistic statement. Cellist Bernt Andre Moen gets the writing credit for “Child’s Play Part 3”, a piece that is highlighted by fluttering piano and shifting modulations by the stringed instruments. In the meantime, the group’s ability to shift moods is displayed best on “High Tide Waves”, as Nordhaus makes an aggressive presence betwixt his low-toned, sleepy verses.

As guest players Moen, cellist Gustav Ekeberg and violinist Leif Wiese accompany the group; an orchestral atmosphere builds, giving way to the singular acoustic guitar melodies of Tchort. Although generally a very prevalent member of the group, Tommy Jackson’s performances are downplayed here, opting for subtle accompaniments that result in more textured music, generally speaking.

A captivating experience in its entirety, “The Acoustic Verses” succeeds on all levels, taking the creativity and expressive performance of this talented group of players to new heights and solidifying Green Carnation’s position amongst the best songcrafters of their kind. In all justice, your attention to this fine album is strictly compulsory.