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Beautiful. - 99%

Doodsvrees, February 11th, 2008

I can’t even begin to describe how astounding this album is. I absolutely love the way that it sounds. Production is top-notch, not a blend that typically yields well for Norwegian black metal. But here it just all fits so well. Every instrument is well defined and sounds great. Nothing is too loud, or too soft, etc. I also really enjoy the skillful drumming of one Tony Kirkemo, whose only contribution to OMC is on this album. Vocally, Galder is one of my all-time favorites. His voice is so cold and wicked sounding that it’s really an unmistakable black metal record, unlike some of OMC’s later releases.

The album kicks off with “The Millennium King,” an unbelievable first track and one of the best on the album. While M-A claims that OMC are a melodic black metal band and I agree with this, let it also be known that there is heavy keyboard work going on here. The interlude towards the end of this track is quite fantastic and atmospheric. Following “…and show us your grace.” my ears were blistered with a solo that is rarely found in black metal, and one that I find to be an enormous step forward for the genre, if done well. Some say that this is the only track on the album worth listening to, and up until I really studied the album I agreed. While it’s easily a big highlight of the album, the rest of the songs keep up with it quite well.

One thing I really enjoy about this entire album is the pace. Everything moves along pretty quickly without becoming too…slow…as is the case for A LOT of black metal I come across. This is just personal preference, but it’s a nice bit of fresh air to have a faster album. The next track is “Behind The Mask’ and while it’s not lyrically and vocally as good as the first, the riffs are awesome and it’s definitely an enjoyable listen.

All in all, it’s an album that I think every fan of black metal should own. If you’re only a fan of high screeches and hazy production, I wouldn’t recommend this. This is easily the highlight of OMC’s career, and one that deserves a lot more credit that it’s received. Amazing.