Friday, June 29, 2007

BAL SAGOTH: (1995) A Black Moon Broods Over Lemuria

This is the reissue of the hard-to-find imported album originally released in 1995. For newcomers, Bal Sagoth is a British band that commits itself to exploring fantasy with witches, warriors, wizards and the like. They're LOADED with imaginative imagery and have very elaborate songwriting that is uncommon for the genre of black/death metal. This album was an incredible debut for the darker side of metal, and was the first album I heard by the band which immediately turned me on to seeking more of their future works. A little heavier and rougher than the future albums, the vocals on this album range from guttural death (unfound on later releases) to black metal rasping, to the low James Earl Jones voice which became more of a signature for the band in their following albums. With the exceptions of the title track and the final track, the keyboards are a little darker and more maniacal than the later albums which sport a prettier, majestic sound. The guitar riffing on this album is also a little more akin to death metal...the rhythm guitars are low-tuned and sporadically it's chunk, chunk, chunk, but still catchy and well integrated into the song structure. Lyrically, the songs on this album are more like conventional song lyrics with rhymes and stanzas instead of staight-out epic storytelling. I think this album currently stands as Bal Sagoth's most different endeavor b/c "Starfire burning..." refined the signatures which were then elaborated into prettier keyboards with sudden speed bursts. Structural highpoints of "Black Moon..." are the title track (still one of my favorite songs ever) "Spellcraft and Moonfire", and the last song "Into Silent Chambers..." which has to be one of the greatest finales to any heavy metal album... So should you buy the album? Hell yes! Good roar and grind for the unquiet mind....Brahmael

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1 comment:

Jose Elias said...

Excelente aporte, de los mejores de Bal-Sagoth!!! gracias