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Somewhat fragmented, but listenable - 75%

TimFS, May 29th, 2007

This album contains the loveliness of the musical melodies and production of Red for Fire, and the more or less consistent storyline, but less of the musical continuity, which really lets the album down. A quarter of the tracks on this album are instrumentals or poems. It really ruins the pace, much like being stuck in some kind of musical traffic jam.

Aside from that, those instrumentals and poems are consistent with the overall narrative and aesthetic (despite the daring use of saxophone as was used on Sun I Call on Red for Fire, which again works surprisingly well). The actual songs have some truly wonderful moments, like Cornelius’ tortured voice on Queen in the Bay of Smoke, what I have heard being described as a rather Queen-like vibe on Allfathers, and Trickster G/Garm’s guest on Loki Trickster God, basically the same tune as White Frost Queen from Red for Fire, but beautifully reworked by Garm.

This is not necessarily a poor album, but it is somewhat limited when considered on its own merits. If you wish to purchase this album, buy Red for Fire first, then you can view the two albums as two parts of a great saga and excellent presentation.