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Strange but good genre - 93%

defyexistance, December 20th, 2009

The thing that really hooks a person on this album is probably the fact that this is so original. Other than a few Siebenburgen albums, I do not know that any other albums in this genre exist. A pity, because this is one good fusion.

This album has quite a bit of thought put into it. The gradual progression of Ad Vitam Aeternam from piano to almost fortissimo by the end of the song is a welcome change from the usual blandness of goth metal, and a nice, lush escape from the pure harshness of black metal. The abrupt sense of fanfare in Saint is another highlight of this album. Touches like this keep this album interesting.

The black metal vocals throughout juxtapose nicely with the predominant keyboard. The guitars play second fiddle to the keyboards, and this creates quite an enchanting atmosphere. Tho one thing that could be improved drastically, is the drumming. It is neither primal and harshly simplistic, like Darkthrone, nor technical and interesting, like Satyricon, but a boring constant pulse. It lacks any sense of bludgeoning battery or off-beat emotion. This waters down the intricacy of the keyboards and is somewhat baneful to the sound of the album.

I would recommend this album to anyone who likes goth metal, as this is predominantly goth metal, and anyone who is new to the metal scene and wants to get into black metal, but cannot quite handle the grimness of it yet. Black metal purists would find this a gross perversion of black metal, and fans of pansy, Nightwish-style goth metal would find this grating.