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Indeed - 95%

Znarglaxe, December 24th, 2002

As I am new to this site, most of you will not know that this is one of my favorite albums of all time. In this review, I shall share my inane banterings on how great this album is.

First, i would like to point out that relatively few bands have done and still fail to do what sentenced did on this album.

Okay, now with the review.

This album is simply amazing. This is truly the epic point to what would be known as Melodic (or Progressive) Death Metal. The songs envision something so truly epic, and the imagery of the words, coupled with the melody of the guitar Miika Tenkula pulls off so well, as well as Vesa Ranta's little triplet "slam" that he does, in addition to Lopakka's impeccable playing the rhythm section, and Jarva's eerie if not haunting wail, contain the ability to just completely and utterly sweep you off of your feet. Never before has anything so utterly blown me away (other than Maiden's "Powerslave", "Seventh Son of a Seventh Son", "Piece of Mind", and "Brave new World", and Nightwish's "Wishmaster") in such a way. This album, is truly a masterpiece.

What makes it so good? Let's have a look at the songs. The War Ain't Over? Simply brilliant, mayhaps a little long in getting to the tender meat inside the shell, but this song simply astouds masses with it's ferocity. It has a definite post war feel to it, while at the same time sweeping you back into the frays of the battle. At times, it may become a little droning, but as Sentenced's earlier work has proven, they can pull themselves out with a mere change in timing. Phenix? Indeed another good song, a little slow on the execution. A very good song that has a great "pulling back" feel, as an ocean wave does. It pulls the listener into a daze as the music pulls their mind into a state of trance, then the chorus comes along and smashes their thoughts. This song is good, but not one of the highlights. Excellent musicianship though. New Age Messiah? This song is a true melodic death metal gem. It has merit in that it has timing changes which indicate sections of the song (Chorus, Pre Chorus, etc) and add an effect of surging chaos as the chorus approaches. Also, this song is one the best songs i have heard interweave the ever present Solo in with the body of the song. Superb. Foreverlost? Indeed the true masterpiece of a true masterpiece. This song starts off with a mellow note, then turns to a marching feel, with the haunting lines of "Everyman" said in the background. As it comes into the main part of the song, the beginning of the body is an utterly masterful melody which ensnares the mind's very essence and pulls you into the song. The entire song is original, and is definitely a musical creation of massive proportions. The fusion of female vocals with Jarva's is a nice touch too. Funeral Spring is my least favorite from this album. In general, the first four songs are the best on the album, but the Last four songs are indeed great also. After "Funeral Spring" Sentenced once again nails us with such classics as "Dance on the Graves" "Moon Magick" "Nepenthe" and "The Golden Stream of Lapland" (The intro to "Dance on the Graves" sounds like the chase level in "Battletoads VS Double Dragon"'s level music.) In all actuality, the only mediocre song on this album is Funeral Spring, and that is why it did not get a 100 from me.

All in all, if you are not a fan of very melodic DM, then do not check this out. Also, fans of high quality production, might skip this over, as it does have a rather low quality production, or at least an average production. And also, Jarva's voice is an aquired taste, if you did not like his stuff on NFH, you will not like his on this.

A must-get essential of metal. Get it.