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Capitvating and Mesmerizing - 93%

Diabolical_Vengeance, December 23rd, 2004

There are very few albums that I’ve heard in my time that make me crave for more of the same; that beg me to press the ‘repeat’ button. Nortt’s Graven (the 1999 version) is one of those. Despite its brief length (less than 30 minutes of music) this is one of the most stunning and mesmerizing releases I’ve heard in quite some time.

As soon as the intro begins one is lost within undulating waves of music and sound. One feels trapped into an arduous journey filled with toil and sorrow, as if one is carrying a great load against a sea of obstacles. At times your speakers are flooded with sound like you were listening to Mul or Esoteric, although in this case, not only does noise fill your speakers, but contemplative, sorrowful melodies. Tortured screams and haunting clean vocals also form part of the soundscape. One is lost within the mesmerizing layers of sound, suddenly, and all too quickly, the outro arrives to peel away all that we’ve been enveloped in. When it’s all over, one feels cast adrift after a brief sojourn at sea, one filled with much toil but accompanied with a sense of accomplishment. One only wants to jump back into the ship to sail away, knowing full well that the journey will be brief, but it’s a journey worth taking nonetheless. An outstanding release, one that is very earphone-worthy.