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a magical and timeless piece of art - 95%

SunGodPortal, July 7th, 2006

This little EP is awesome and happens to be one of my all time favorite albums. What I love about it is that it's very straight-forward, super aggressive and intense, but still manages to sound controlled, intelligent and even quite relaxing. The guitars play mainly on the higher notes as opposed to the lower ones so there's more of a sense of melody and harmony, instead of just growling dischordant noise that most black metal bands use to varying degrees of sucess. The simple, but effective keyboards always seem to come in at just the right moments to either make things more dramtic or give it a sombre, majestic tone. This works in a wonderful and unique way since the songs are almost always going at full speed. Aldrahn's vocals, Frost's fluid and rolling drum style (don't recall ever hearing him play quite like this on any other release) and the bass make it sound very schizophrenic and pissed-off while Ihashn's synth and Samoth's guitar make everything seem very mellow and almost nostalgic. (especially on track 2) It creates a sort of contrast of moods that I don't think I've ever heard to this extent and effectiveness elsewhere. Thus I think this EP is truly unique. A black metal essential.