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yeah dudes i dug stormblast too - 40%

Noktorn, August 25th, 2011

I don't like to hate on a record just because it isn't more than it is, but come on, Taliándörögd, is this really the best you can do? "Neverplace" is an EP that simply sounds so minor and inconsequential you can't help but kind of resent it. In essence, this CD is nothing more than a rehashing of what Dimmu Borgir was doing at the same time period but with more overt black metal elements- seriously, remove the blast beats and it would be hard to distinguish this from that band or early Nokturnal Mortum. While the idea of that sounds cool- the professionalism and slick modernity of Dimmu's later career colliding headlong with their earlier black metal style- the reality is that it just comes off as sounding like two pretty boring things instead of one. I almost forget this EP is on when it's actually playing.

A lot of the problems Dimmu Borgir suffers from are the same that bring this down: the keyboards are really overbearing and tend to just shimmer arbitrarily without really going anywhere in particular. The melodic style is horribly cracked between pretty cool, vikingish midpaced passages (like on "The Glimpse") and artificially grim-sounding Dark Funeral knockoff tremolo, which comes across as cheesy at best and tends to ruin the more mellow moments. If all Taliándörögd did was stick to the more midpaced, atmospheric sections of their music, this would sound like a decent enough knockoff of Dimmu's first couple albums; but in the pursuit of variation, there's a loss of focused songwriting. A couple elements are neat- I do like the solos which tend to appear on each song; they're suprisingly well composed and gripping. The drumming is pretty fun to listen to. The production is full-bodied and swirling in a nicely wintry way. But for the most part, the package is just so dull and paint-by-numbers I can't think of a reason to listen to it.

A lot of this stuff popped up from the early to mid-'00s, but it's definitely not anything we need to think about now.