November 2006 Archives

Manticora: The Black Circus - Part 1 - The LettersCD, Massacre Records 2006

Track list: Enter The Carnival - The Black Circus - Intuneric I - Enchanted Mind - Intuneric II - Forever Carousel - Freakshow - Gypsies' Dance Part 1 - Intuneric III - Wisdom - Intuneric IV - Disciples Of The Entities

Manticora's main idea is to create concept albums based on literature. They've used science fiction before; now it's H.P. Lovecraft. I didn't realize the connection until I read about it elsewhere; it isn't that obvious. The music is raunchy power metal, but at least with some unique touch. I don't care much about most power metal, but this was definitely more inspiring than it usually is. So, not a bad album at all. ****

Lycosia: ApokaLipstik

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Lycosia: ApokaLipstikCD, Araknid Records 2006

Track list: Last Splash - All These Worlds - Follow Me - Hard Dressed Bitch - Leftover - Kiss Me Hard - Say Fuck Yeah! - Light Years - уmhae Дpaka - Don't Say a Word (Make up mix)

This French band mixes goth, glam and industrial for quite a mix. Too bad I don't like it. Most of it seems fairly pointless, just rushing around for no particular reason. The best parts I might play on a goth club night, and I think this band might be worth seeing live, but listening the whole album through? Won't happen again for me. **

Century Sleeper: Awaken

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Century Sleeper: AwakenCD, Bombworks Records 2006

Track list: Voyage - Arnos Vale - My Face in Eternity - Look Straight Through - Lost on Your Ocean - Fainted World - Centenary - Your Once Loving Heart - The End - As I Close the Final Page - Autumn

This is one long album. Century Sleeper's gothic doom metal is slow and heavy; definitely deeper than likes of Katatonia and Paradise Lost, yet lighter than the heaviest funeral doom or doomdeath. I'm bit undecided here: parts of this sound very good, but many parts don't. Somewhat shorter this would've probably worked much better. ***

Borknagar: Origin

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Borknagar: OriginCD, Century Media 2006

Track list: Earth Imagery - Grains - Oceans Rise - Signs - White - Cynosure - Human Nature - Acclimation - The Spirit Of Nature

The new Borknagar album is acoustic, yet it still very much sounds like Borknagar. So strong is Øystein Brun's touch, I suppose. I like it; the songs are powerful and intense, even with their lighter instrumentation. Unfortunately the unplugged environment manages to bring up the weaker side of Vintersorg's vocals; they aren't always quite as top-notch as rest of the album. Still, this is a good album for the fans of soft progressive rock. ****

Azaghal: Luciferin valo

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Azaghal: Luciferin valoCD, Avantgarde Music 2006

Track list: Black Terror Metal - Ilmestyskirjan ratsastajat - Tuhoaja - Kuin lampaat teuraalle - Verta ja tuhkaa - Teen paholaisen työtä - Azaghal Terror Cult - Hyvästit maailmalle - Olematon - Luciferin Valo

Azaghal's black metal is simple and straight-forward. I like it; there are few surprisingly catchy tracks. The only negative is the heavily cliche-laden lyrics, but once you get over that (and enjoy the few exceptionally funny lines), it's all good. Nothing special, perhaps, but it's a good, steady ride. Few of the tracks stand out and will definitely remain on my playlist. ****

Luna Ad Noctum: The Perfect Evil in MortalCD, Metal Mind Records 2006

Track list: Phantoms ov Wrath (Intro) - The Perfect Evil in Mortal - Diablex Virus - Devilrising Impact - Humana Androide - Deviante Obscurante - Deceptive Fatality - Dimness in Me - Loneliness Ruined My Life

Polish Luna Ad Noctum plays fairly aggressive black metal in the style of Dimmu Borgir, Old Man's Child and Cradle of Filth. While their style isn't the most unique, it's still fresh enough so that I wouldn't necessarily label them as another clone band. There's some good energy here. However, the tracks are pretty bland, mostly - not enough hooks. Still; if you're fan of Dimmu Borgir, check this out. ***

Cemetery of Scream: The Event HorizonCD, Metal Mind Records 2006

Track list: Prophet - Ganges - Komatrance - On the Border - Cold Obsession in My Eyes - Absinthe - The Secret Window - Burial Ground - In His Room - Where Next?

Cemetery of Scream's work lies somewhere between doom and gothic metal. It's not very heavy (as in low-growling guitars and funeral slowness), but certainly melancholic, with curious oriental tones mixed in. Katatonia feels like a decent comparison. Parts of this are very good, some less so, but most of the album sounds actually quite pleasing. Song material isn't top-notch, but definitely better than average. Besides, in the era of MP3 players, who cares about few substandard tracks? ****

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