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Old 12-04-2008, 02:26 PM   #71 (permalink)
Juicious Maximus III
 
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My advice would be to sit back with something warm and intoxicating, or even better, toke up and just soak it all in.
Great review of a band I didn't know until today. Now I'm listening to the album while leaning back in the chair with something intoxicating (a cold beer and a whisky) - like you suggested . I'm still on the first track, but from what I've heard so far, I predict future spine chills and I am sure I'm gonna grow very fond of this one indeed!

You write that it goes well with snowy weather. I'll try it out myself tomorrow morning!
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Old 12-07-2008, 06:20 AM   #72 (permalink)
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ALBUM #2


Bloodbath – Unblessing The Purity (EP)

Cover:


Year: 2008
Genre: Death Metal
Tracklisting:
1. Blasting The Virginborn (3:32)
2. Weak Aside (4:14)
3. Sick Salvation (3:21)
4. Mouth Of Empty Praise (4:31)

We all have a certain demon inside, and every now and then you need to feed that demon in order to retain your sanity. My demon just happens to be an extreme metal fan, and this bitesize chunk of brutality is just what I need to satisfy his thirst. With the final return of Mikael Åkerfeldt on vocals this EP is exactly what you want from Death Metal today.

Blasting the Virginborn

Before you say anything, yes I know it’s not an album, and yes I know Bloodbath have released an album after this EP, but I haven’t got around to listening to it yet. Anyways let me get all the metal cliché review phrases out of the way first, this EP FUCKING crushes, demolishes, rapes and is generally br00tal, it is indeed a veritable crushfest.

Weak Aside

The sheer heaviness of the guitars and the absolutely brilliant delivery of Mikael’s vocals here is what makes this EP brilliant. They’ve crammed as many heavy riffs, surprisingly catchy vocals and fast as **** drumming in here as they possibly can. Sprinkle it with some very awesome pinch harmonics and you have the makings of what makes Death Metal good.

Sick Salvation

But metal aside, this EP is very well constructed, it has great flow and structure, it feels genuinely organic as well which is rare. The melodic aspect of the EP is surprisingly considering how generally brutal the whole release is.

Mouth of Empty Praise

This is a must have for those of us with that demon inside that constantly hungers for the brutality that is only available from certain kinds of Metal. It’s very short and to the point and it makes a good case for me to finally check out the full release. Since it’s an EP my review will be out of 5.

4.2/5
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Old 01-05-2009, 02:07 PM   #73 (permalink)
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ALBUM #3


Joanna Newsom – The Milk-Eyed Mender

Cover:


Year: 2004
Genre: Indie/Folk
Tracklisting:
1. Bridges and Balloons (3:42)
2. Sprout and the Bean (4:32)
3. The Book of Right-On (4:29)
4. Sadie (6:02)
5. Inflammatory Writ (2:50)
6. This Side of the Blue (5:21)
7. En Gallop (5:07)
8. Cassiopeia (3:20)
9. Peach, Plum, Pear (3:34)
10. Swansea (5:07)
11. Three Little Babes (3:42)
12. Clam, Crab, Cockle, Cowrie (3:50)

Joanna Newsom, whos musical career started here with so much promise has managed to make one of the great albums of this decade. Driven by strong and confident lyrics with competent harps and a voice, that well… a voice that would stop traffic in the way Monroe’s upskirt shenanigans would. The album starts on a very strong note with the first two songs being some of her stronger efforts.

I must say that her voice will be your biggest stumbling block when it comes to being able to appreciate this brilliant music. She often sounds like a deranged child with several speech impediments, but once it gets under your skin you’ll love her forever. If you manage to listen until Inflammatory Writ you’ll pretty much be a fan for life. Sadie is the ultimate test, but after the introduction it’s incredibly satisfying.

Sprout and the Bean

My favourite song on the album has to be Inflammatory Writ, the strong, confident and rolling lyrics here are supported by a simple piano which perfectly complements Newsom’s vocals. The aggression and sheer strength of delivery works so well, and as for her inflammatory writ? Well she wrote it and was not inflamed one bit! Some lines in this song show that she is capable of being one of the great songwriters of our time. You’ll find yourself addicted to the sounds and little bits of vocals that she delivers as you get more and more intimate with Newsom’s voice, and it’s incredibly entrancing.

The relaxing feel of songs such as This Side of the Blue let you simply sit back and relax and enjoy the overall experience, and it adds a completely new depth to the album. I’ve always found the whole album to have a dark underbelly, a pretentious voice that runs through saying “I’m a bit to smart for the average listener”. And I think it just might be right, songs such as En Gallop and Inflammatory Writ do exude this feeling, and for me it makes the whole album so much stronger. Her confidence in being able to create something that reflects her underlying intelligence and eccentricity just makes the whole experience even more palatable.

Peach,Plum,Pear

This album gets better with every listen, there’s nothing better than being able to follow the lyrics and know when your favourite parts are imminent. The lyrical qualities here are absolutely stunning and it has rekindled my love for the written (sung) word. Joanna Newsom here has created something truly special, a folk album that not only has interesting and appropriate music and vocals; but also a lyrical aspect that outshines them both. It feels very organic and the whole albums flows with ease. The Milk-Eyed Mender is without a doubt the best release from 2004, get it, get it now, PM’s are as always, welcome.

9.7/10
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Quote:
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classical music isn't exactly religious, you know?
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Last edited by Comus; 01-05-2009 at 02:16 PM.
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Old 01-05-2009, 09:11 PM   #74 (permalink)
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ALBUM #1


[center]Citay – Little Kingdom

Cover:


.....
Very nice review and thanks for turning me onto these guys! I definetly agree that this album sets a warming atmosphere that you described. I am definetly going to get into some more of this psychedelic/folk.
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Old 01-06-2009, 03:08 PM   #75 (permalink)
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ALBUM #4


Ulver – Shadows of the Sun

Cover:


Year: 2007
Genre: Ambient/Electronic
Tracklisting:
1. Eos (5:05)
2. All the Love (3:42)
3. Like Music (3:30)
4. Vigil (4:27)
5. Shadows of the Sun (4:36)
6. Let the Children Go (3:50)
7. Solitude (3:53)
8. Funebre (4:26)
9. What Happened? (6:25)

Shadows of the Sun doesn’t start with a bang, it’s not that type of album, it does not make an immediate impression in the way you’d expect. This is an album that will stick with you long after a first listen. This album delivers a feeling, a relaxation that is so hard to replicate. Garm’s beautifully delivered vocals here are his strongest effort since his black metal days, and that’s saying a lot.

Eos

All this being said, Shadows of the Sun comes off as a very “safe” album, but I can’t say that it honestly detracts from the experience. The vocals often feel quite clumsy, especially in All the Love, but considering Ulver is a Norwegian band it is quite forgivable. That being said the general feel and beat of All the Love delivers just what is wanted, and yes I’m going to be talking about music altering emotions again; sorry. Once the beat fully kicks in it takes over, Eos will have completely disarmed the listener and once All the Love fully kicks in it is hard not to get sucked in. It’s hard to describe the desired effect here, but it’s more a trance than anything fully emotional.

I must say that the production on this has gone above and beyond, parts of this album sound very crisp, and it flows really well. Ulver have however realised that some of these albums shouldn’t sound perfectly crisp and I think this realisation has added so much to the full atmosphere of the album. What will get more and more apparent as the album goes on is just how much thought has gone into the composition and just how great Garm sounds now. It hearkens back to Kveldssanger (albeit far less harsh), Ulver’s true masterpiece, and this is definitely a good thing.

Vigil

The album is very heavy in an ambient sense, there is a lot going on, and it can often be hard to take it in, it’s very dense and it just leaves you with the feeling of a foggy morning after a night out. My favourite song of course would have to be the cover of Black Sabbath’s Solitude, which is done so well here, and as always Garm’s vocals shine on.

Overall, Shadows of the Sun is a brilliant return to form for Ulver, who I have found unlistenable after Nattens Madrigal. It seems they’ve finally found a way to make good albums in this new experimental vein and I hope that this is continued. Ulver have made managed to create a lovely, lush and believable sonic experience, it’s beautifully ambient and incredibly relaxing. The only downside is that it’s too bloody short.

8.8/10
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Old 01-12-2009, 04:00 AM   #76 (permalink)
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From what I have heard of Joanna Newsome I like. I think she is one of those love/hate artists but I am a sucker for Female vocalists.

Sorry to digress but I would love to hear that Leaf Hound album sometime too.
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Old 01-12-2009, 04:20 AM   #77 (permalink)
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I got my hands on Joanna Newsome after reading your review. It sounds like a good album and my girlfriend also seems to like it .. it's nice to get some music we can both listen to (she doesn't appreciate everything I put on).

About Leaf Hound, in case you're not aware, they got together and made a new album in 2007 called Unleashed. I have it, but I haven't listened much to it, so I can't tell you if I like it or not, but according to wikipedia, it's supposed to be good.

Quote:
Originally Posted by From Wikipedia's article on Leaf Hound
New album Unleashed was released on November 12, 2007. It features eight all new compositions by Peter French and Luke Rayner and also a reworking of Atomic Rooster's "Breakthrough". The album has been met with critical acclaim from the music press with Kerrang! calling it, "As good a rock album as you could hope to hear." Classic Rock Magazine noted, "An unpretentious hard rock record, relying on strong songs and powerful performances." French and Rayner were also praised for their production skills, "Preserving the Classic Rock sound."
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Old 01-14-2009, 08:11 AM   #78 (permalink)
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I'm listening to the Leaf hound album now and I have to say it's bloody brilliant. Great dirty rock with a swagger. Like Led Zep but 20X better!

Do you have any Family BTW? I'm desperate for their release 'Bandstand'.
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Old 01-15-2009, 08:18 PM   #79 (permalink)
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I'm listening to the Leaf hound album now and I have to say it's bloody brilliant. Great dirty rock with a swagger. Like Led Zep but 20X better!

Do you have any Family BTW? I'm desperate for their release 'Bandstand'.
I know, Growers of Mushroom just keeps on growing on me, on that subject, yes Tore I am aware of their new release but I'm rather tentative about hearing it.

On the subject of Family, no I don't actually have any of their work at the moment, I can ask around for you since I'm quite interested as well. As for both the review corner and the prescription at boots, I have an assignment to hand in later today (I just woke up and it's quarter past three in the morning) so I imagine I can have a new review for both my journals by saturday, or even friday night.
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Old 02-01-2009, 12:27 PM   #80 (permalink)
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ALBUM #5


maudlin of the Well - Bath

Cover:


Year: 2001
Genre: avant-garde
Tracklisting:
1. The Blue Ghost / Shedding Qlipoth (7:57)
2. They Aren't All Beautiful (5:36)
3. Heaven and Weak (7:42)
4. Interlude 1 (1:38)
5. The Ferryman (7:50)
6. Marid's Gift Of Art (3:41)
7. Girl With A Watering Can (8:44)
8. Birth Pains Of Astral Projection (10:34)
9. Interlude 2 (2:12)
10. Geography (4:26)

Anyone who knows me will know that I recently dismissed Kayo Dots most recent album for departing from what I felt made motW and the first to KD albums brilliant. It’s all about the energy and most of all about the metal. Frankly Toby, do whatever the **** you want when it comes to music, but as long as you release under the Kayo Dot name you better make sure to have some actually cool bits in it!

The album stats very quietly, almost apprehensive, there is some lovely use of silence which I find absolutely mesmerizing. It is a perfect start to the album, it warms the listener up to the experience of the album. They Aren’t all Beautiful is what made motW so bloody brilliant, the harsh unexpected edge after such a calm introductory track. That being said, there’s a certain edge that keeps it so far from metal itself, it merely incorporates it into the music.

The Blue Ghost/Shedding Qlipoth

I’ve always felt motW have more in common with say Caravan than with any metal band, there’s just a bit more pressure on the music, the band is clearly trying for a greater impact and it shows. The result is a far more focus effort (I know this sounds crazy but bear with me) than the 70’s style prog which I feel it bears great resemblance. This album is perfect to compare to Opeth’s Watershed with the difference that Opeth is more on the metal side that motW.

Heaven and Weak shows exactly what motW is capable of, they’ve built up two sides of a story and now they start the trial, the perfect amalgam that is avant-garde. Anyone who can listen to this album and not find themselves entertained must have sever mental deficiencies, there is so much to take in and it works so well in its own favour. Everyone will have their favourite parts, whether they be the metal or the more proggy elements but I doubt anyone can say that they’d have the same impact, or be as palatable without the combination of the two elements.

Heaven and Weak

Whenever I listen to this album I feel a certain insolence in the production seep through to the listener, there is a definite sense of superiority on display here. I’ve always felt that with this album especially they knew it was going to be good, and they knew anyone who disagrees would be completely and utterly wrong. I must say this pays off in spades.

The album develops through in the same vein as before but never loses the meaty edge that makes it so great. There truly is never a dull moment here and it’s ultimately incredibly rewarding to properly familiarise yourself with the album fully.

In my opinion Bath is maudlin’s masterpiece, and it’s all held together superbly by an utter feeling of superiority, this album knows it’s better than you, and it’s certainly not afraid to say it, again and again! It's also worth mentioning that every time I finish listening to this album I feel so intensely happy that it's difficult to even imagine ever being sad.

10/10
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Quote:
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classical music isn't exactly religious, you know?
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