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Phantasmagory > Odd Sounds > Reviews
Phantasmagory - Odd Sounds

Masterpiece of prog-death - 95%

natrix, March 15th, 2004

Phantasmagory put the Ukraine on the map with this one, along with Castrum, Nokturnal Mortem, and Inward Path. And holy shit, this blows away most other prog-death metal bands, even Opeth.
There are the influences from Pestilence's Spheres on here, most notably in the choppy guitar riffs and the jazzy sounding parts. A few parts make me think of Nocturnus' Thresholds, especially in the long structures and semi-techncial riffs.
"Labyrinth of Thinking" is a great way to start. You immediately have the Pestilence riffing with keys and some crazy drumming, which is then followed by a slight build-up in the music. "Echoes of Depression Whirlwind" has a virtual whirlwind of drumming and maddening riffs. It's an instrumental and manages to lead up well to the next song, "Allegory." "Allegory" is a great song that starts out with a melodic jazzy intro then goes into more Nocturnus stuff, especially the killer chorus. The best song on here is "Everlasting Change," which is really damn long (I've only got the tape here so I can't check how long it is), and is supposed to represent the change of the seasons. There's a cool, slow Maiden riff somewhere in the middle that really grabs my attention, but for all purposes, the whole song is excellent. Finally, we have the song "Weird Sounds," which has a sort of doomy riff in the beginning, and more Nocturnus styled riffs for the prechorus. Very good. The outro sucks, though. It's just some stupid keyboard thing that sounds very annoying, hence living up to the name of "Disharmagory."
The guitars are handled by one man, Eduard Miroshnichenko. This guy plays all sorts of different riffs effortlessly, never fucking up once.
They had a great drummer on here, and despite the pretty weak production, you can still actually hear quite a good deal of his little fills and hi-hat sizzles. Bass is good too, rather jazzy and strange in parts, but very well played. I'm kind of mixed about the keyboards, because in a few parts he uses some strange effect that sounds like a xylophone and the bells on Santa's reindeer. Otherwise, they really bring out the feelings in the guitar melodies.
The singer has to be the weak link. His vocals are really low in the mix, and when he isn't screaming in the typical black metal way, he's speaking with a heavy Ukrainian accent (or is it Russian? They are in the eastern part of their country so they might speak Russian...ah, fuck it) that sounds pretty lame. It's a real shame too, because the lyrics are very interesting to read. Mostly about strange feelings and other introspective nightmares, done up in a rather poetic fashion.
If you like Death, Nocturnus, Cynic, Atheist, Pestilence, and any other "prog-death" group, you'll love this album. There is not one mistake to be found on this album, which is really saying something about the muscians on here (except for probably the vocalist). It does suffer from weaker production, but it leaves a hell of an impression if you're into this type of thing.