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TrogDawn
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PostSubject: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Wed Jan 17, 2007 9:44 pm

If you have or want to write a review for bands/albums in this genre, you can do so in this thread.
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Thu Jan 18, 2007 5:24 pm



BLACK SABBATH - Sabotage (1975)

***** (5 out of 5 stars)


This album is nothing short of a heavy metal masterpiece, in my humble opinion. Sabbath really redefined their sound and peaked with both this and their previous release, Sabbath Bloody Sabbath. One can hear layered guitars galore and a production that gives the entire album an "otherworldly" sound (and transports the listener entirely somewhere else indeed!)

The album comes out swinging with "Hole in the Sky" which showcases all four members at the top of their craft. A classic riff by Tony along with a wonderfully dissonant double-tracked harmony guitar lead, a soaring and melodic vocal line by Ozzy, an incredibly fluid and contrasting bass line coupled with finely crafted lyrical imagery by Geezer, and thundering drumming by Bill Ward all combine to make an incredible whole that is DEFINITELY more than the sum of its parts (and this is only the FIRST TRACK!) A short, classically inspired and dissonant acoustic guitar piece by Tony follows and segues into the classic and bone crunching "Symptom of the Universe" which includes a beautiful acoustic layered and melodic outro that is just as lovely as anything the classic prog-rock bands ever did (i.e. ELP, Yes, Tull, etc). This hard/soft formula works so well for Sabbath on this album that they continue to employ it with several of the upcoming tracks. "Megalomania" takes it and reverses the order, starting out with an ambient arrangement that can only be described as "haunting". Midway through the song, the tempo changes and Sabbath pounds it home like only they can with possibly the most classic and ne'er heard riff of their career and definitely some of the most sinister vocals ever heard on tape before or since.

(Here comes side two, for all of you who first discovered this gem on VINYL.)

Just when you think it can't possibly get any better, "The Thrill of it All" comes in with an incredible start/stop riff that leaves you drooling on your fretboard! The "hard/soft" formula is again employed and the outro section is every bit as exquisite as the ones that preceded it, if not more so. Next, the Sabs take it up another notch with the awesome "Supertzar", which is an instrumental piece that uses a full choir to sing the phonetic and inspiring vocal lines. GEEZ! If only to give us a break, the next track, "Am I Going Insane (Radio)", is the "single" on the album (if there really ever was such a thing on a Sab release). Lesser in total track time, but no less weird, the protagonist of the song continually asks the listener about the state of his mental health over rhythm tracks that race probably as fast as the poor man's thoughts and sound equally dissonant as his cognitive processes. At the end, one can hear bizarre screams of agony over careless laughter which only slightly prepares you for the magnum opus which is to come. "The Writ" starts out innocuously enough with a fluid bass line that only slightly hints at the massive wall of sound to follow. Lyrically, the piece seems to lash out at the horrible management situation the Sabs had just crawled out from under. Sonically, the song is no less poignant. As if stating that the previous efforts did not quite meet their own great expectations, they go again into a melodic outro that seals this masterpiece in the annals of heaviness.

As if at this point the quivering puddle of what was once the listener on the floor really cares...

Randy Michaud - 7/29/02


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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Thu Jan 18, 2007 5:27 pm



BLACK SABBATH - Technical Ecstasy (1976)

*** (3 stars out of 5)


"Tech Ec" is definitely the weakest of the original lineup's studio releases. There are a couple of classics on here, however. "Back Street Kids" and "All Moving Parts (Stand Still)" are probably the most finely crafted pieces here. Two additional treats are "You Won't Change Me" with it's nice and slow doom-metal pace, and Bill Ward's vocals on the ballad "It's Alright". Again, it's not up to the usual standards one would expect out of Sabbath, but if you love their creativity, this one is a must to complete the picture. This effort captures a moment in time for a band whose members were experiencing personal turmoil and seemed tired of the image they had been presenting on their previous six studio outings. I mean, it IS the original lineup, and can you really go wrong with that great chemistry? It's cool, even if only for the contrast it provides against the other works. But if you really dig the creativity that Sabbath demonstrated, check it out - but leave your preconceived notions at the door.

Randy Michaud - 7/29/02

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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Thu Jan 18, 2007 5:29 pm



BLACK SABBATH - Never Say Die! (1978)

**** (4 out of 5 stars)


Wake up, people! This is definitely THE most underrated Sabbath album of the Ozzy era! There are some classic moments here if one is able to just let go of the preconceived expectations of what Sabbath is "supposed" to sound like. There isn't really a bad song on this album, in my opinion. The title track, "Johnny Blade", and "Shock Wave" are all hard hitting Sabbath rockers with classic riffs to match, while "Junior's Eyes", "Air Dance", "Over to You" and "A Hard Road" are melodic and slower paced, but emotional and thought provoking numbers. The final cuts, "Breakout" (an instrumental complete with saxophone) and "Swinging the Chain" are definitely different for Sabbath, but Bill Ward handles the vocals on the latter song and how often do we really get to hear him belting out a number? The man has a passion and a rawness to his voice that definitely added another dimension to the already multidimensional Sabbath sound. This album also featured a certain air of hope and positivity that really makes it sound as fresh to me today as it did when I first heard it. Open your mind and give this one another chance. You won't be disappointed.

Randy Michaud - 7/29/02


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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Fri Mar 02, 2007 11:37 am

Small reviews of the DAVID BENSON albums in order of preference:



1. DAVID BENSON/GOLIATH - David & Goliath demos

- David and Mick sounded GREAT together! Too bad they couldn't make it work. To me, these three songs represent the best sounding music either artist has ever made. WAY UP!




2. DAVID BENSON - Premonition of Doom

- His most consistent and doomy release. No filler on this one. Great Christian Doom with hellfire & brimstone lyrics! Twisted Evil




3. DAVID BENSON - Purpose of the Cross

- This one really started to show that David and his band knew how to bring the doom and was a HUGE improvement over the debut. Almost the whole disc is a good listen. Only a couple of duds on here. AMEN!




4. DAVID BENSON - Holy Psychotherapy

- The debut, 6 song disc. First one I ever heard and I grabbed it way back in 1997 because I heard that it sounded a lot like Ozzy. It does, but the songwriting also leaves a lot to be desired. Not bad, just not great. This is also the most rare of his releases. I actually sent a copy of this to David himself (along with the above mentioned demos) because even he didn't have a copy! Laughing)




5. DBEALITY - David's latest. A bit of a departure from the above five with less of an emphasis on the doom. This has more rock elements present and, as a result, I don't like it quite as much. It's well done (and even boasts none other than Robert Sweet on drums), but it hasn't grabbed me as hard as the David Benson releases have. It's also the one I am least familiar with at this point. But it still has a good sound (even thought David has started to move away from the Ozzy vocal sound a bit) and many of you will probably really dig it. Peace out!

- Randy Michaud, March 2007

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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Sat Apr 28, 2007 4:13 pm



PLACE OF SKULLS - The Black is Never Far

Amazing!, April 27, 2007

Reviewer:
Brent E. Johnson "Power M. Fan" (Naches, WA) - See all my reviews
With the rise of the doom/sludge/stoner genre to prominence it seems that Place of Skulls would get more notice. Yet they seem to remain in the cult status the members former bands were in. Hardcore fans revere them but those finding bands like Wolfmother, Black Stone Cherry and others should be checking POS out to really hear the genre done right. Griffin loves the stop start effect of going heavy to light sonically and the vocals fit the overall mood perfectly. The Black Sabbath influence is extremely heavey with dashes of Trouble and even some Deep Purple moments added for variety. I wonder too, if the lyrical content is turning some off as Griffin is writing from a christian world view nowadays, albeit, mostly allegorical. I'd say any fan of aforementioned bands as well as all the ones the former members have been in will love this musically and the lyrics should not stop any fan from enjoying the high quality this band represents.
The above is a review I wrote for Amazon. Feel free to criticize or chastise at will.
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Sat Apr 28, 2007 5:38 pm

Great review, man! Which album are you reviewing though?

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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Sat Apr 28, 2007 9:52 pm

It's the Black is Never Far. Yeah, that didn't copy from Amazon.
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Sun Apr 29, 2007 10:31 am



MY SILENT WAKE - Shadow of Sorrow

This is the latest musical incarnation of Ian Arkley. For those who don't know Mr. Arkley started in the late 80's with a band called Seventh Angel. Sounding some like a slowed down Metallica, they culminated with a drop d masterpiece called Lament For the Weary. This is a must have and not just in Christian music circles.
After an album with Paramaecium , an awesome doom band in it's own right, Arkley formed Ashen Mortality. Showing a softer side as AM mixed keyboards and some female vocals it still retained much of the drop d heaviness of Seventh Angel while moving into more of a doom/death sound.
After a few years of doing where are they now with Ian, he emerges in My Silent Wake. Trying to title the sound here may be pointless. Still retaining the heavy drop d sound at times, we get death/doom with some goth and even some folkish instrumentation. Lyrically Ian has always told tales of the dark night of the soul and the harshness of life that are then infused with the light of God's love and he does so here also. A worthy album for lovers of doomy heavy music that expresses real life with it's blisters and peelings but retaining the hope of The Morning Son.


This is my Amazon review for Shadow of Sorrows. Again, feel free to throw stones or correct mistakes. I hope my time line is right and I know I left out an obscure band or two he was in.
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Sun Apr 29, 2007 3:50 pm

Thanks for the reviews, man! I added band names, titles and album art to your posts. Troggish

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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Sun Apr 29, 2007 7:54 pm

I appreciate that. Here in the sticks we only have dial up so adding pics is mind numbingly slow.
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:47 am

Terhen – Eyes Unfolded
Firebox Records



Of any of the Doom Metal records released this year, Terhen, a band from Finland, have released one of the best. Finland? Of course, Finland. That country seems to have some sort of cornered market on high quality Metal from all genres. Could be some sort of covert scientific experiment by the Finnish government to completely overtake the Metal scene in all corners of the globe…but I digress.

Terhen play a slow, dirge-filled Doom Metal with slight touches of Gothic flair. The use of low growls as opposed to clean vocals gives the record it’s dark, aggressive appeal. They’re the kind of vocals that get under your skin, in a good way, and begin to raise your blood pressure, again in a good way. In a way, they sort of energize the listener (in my case, anyway) and make one excited to be listening to it. Occasional appearances by a female vocalist only add to the atmosphere. Every other aspect of the album, sonically, is perfectly in step as well. The guitars are ungodly heavy, the keyboards add a funeral pyre air & the drums are just ambient enough without washing out. In other words, this record is HEAVY! Everything about it, every song, resonates gloom, despair & misery…5 songs totaling 53+ minutes of pure aural agony.

It simply doesn’t come any better. It’s not about breaking any new ground with Terhen, it’s about making the best Doom Metal the band can make. Fans of Shape Of Despair & Morgion take notice…Terhen needs to be on your list.

By Shawn Pelata

http://www.myspace.com/terhen
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:48 am

The ForeshadowingDays Of Nothing
Candlelight Records



If you’re going to mix Gothic elements into Doom Metal it’s got to be done right. There has to be just the right balance to avoid becoming a caricature of itself. Italian sorrow-mongers The Foreshadowing have struck such a balance. Owing much to UK doomster’s Paradise Lost, they have mastered the art of grey-skied Metal music.

I mention Paradise Lost because that’s the band I am first reminded of, but that’s mainly because of the amount of melody involved here. The atmosphere in this genre is just as important as the musical dexterity & The Foreshadowing deftly blend melody & mood with thick, dense guitar tones. The keys add just enough color so as to enhance, like a sonic mist through which everything else arrives. There are also some beautifully mournful guitar lines that weep almost like an undercurrent violins. The slow tempos help to fully realize the band’s intent, which is to lure you, irresistibly so, into their deep well of grief.

Fans of My Dying Bride, Paradise Lost, & Katatonia’s slower movements will find much to enjoy about Days Of Nothing. A strong album from start to finish, some of the highlights include “Departure”, “The Wandering” & “Last Minute Train”. Seek it out and revel in the sorrow.



By Shawn Pelata

http://www.myspace.com/theforeshadowing
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:50 am

Winters – "Black Clouds In Twin Galaxies"
Rise Above



God bless Lee Dorian. His Rise Above Records is bringing us some very cool Doom oriented Metal these days. Winters play a Cathedral-esque, rough-around-the-edges sort of Doom Metal with a healthy dose of Indie Rock. In other words, it's heavy on the roots of Doom while having some body part (or parts) firmly entrenched in the here & now.

The tones on this record are raw and abrasive. Everything sounds big and live. This does nothing but add to the heavy vibe on the album. Doomy atmospheres ooze & crawl out of the speakers when these guys start riffing. Vocally, there is where the Indie Rock feel comes in. Paul Fyfe has an understated, very English delivery akin to Radiohead or even Pedro The Lion…or, if you will, imagine Elliot Smith dropping some guest vocals from beyond the grave on a St. Vitus record. That may sound (more than) a little out of place at first, but it actually gives the album a refreshing counter-vibe. Had Winters employed a gravelly-voiced screamer they would have run the risk of blending in a bit too much.

This is easily one of the best Doom related releases of 2007 for me. It may even find a spot in my (as well as others) Top Ten List by year's end. Not enough can be said about how cool & fresh Winters is. I have bore witness to a future legend in the genre, and it is good.

By Shawn Pelata
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Wed Oct 31, 2007 10:51 am

Litmus – "Planetfall"
Rise Above



Oh wow…where to begin. Litmus play a sort of Cosmic Stoner Rock. I hear traces of Floyd, Tull & (of course) Sabbath all throughout the Planetfall album...even hints of Steppenwolf's more trippy moments. The vocals are clean & harmonized, the guitars are wide & heavy, the synths are lush & sweeping. This album is all about mood creation & mind expansion and is most definitely made for the headphone crowd. Not those wimpy little "ear buds" all the iPod's come with. I'm talking about the big, orange, ear-covering headphones with the curly cable.

Each song, no…I can't even call them songs. Each soundscape Litmus presents us is pure, undiluted rock wrapped in velvet tapestries of spacey synthesizers & an all-encompassing, passionate vibe. You can easily picture these guys sweating on stage in a forest of shaggy hair & Gibson SG guitars (note: only one of them even has long hair, but that's beside the point). Guitar solos are delivered drenched in wah-pedal glory, and the jam passages are truly inspiring and spirited.

This is a fun, fun record to listen to, period. Fans of Space Rock & Stoner Doom have a new obsession here for sure. Planetfall offers more than enough energy, atmosphere and heaviness to enjoy for years to come. Blast off!

By Shawn Pelata
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Wed Feb 27, 2008 3:55 pm

It's more a mix of doom and other genres, but the man himself said Paramaecium was a big influence.

This review is on Jesusmetal.com, written by me.

www.myspace.com/sawolmusic




Tracklist:

1. Desolate
2. Lethal State
3. Restoration



Sometimes when browsing around on forums you find bands you haven't
heard of yet, but then you listen and really like the tunes or samples.
When you're lucky they have a release out, which contains more of the
stuff you like so much. This happened to me with Sawol,
and Pekka was even that kind, that he sent me a copy to review.

Sawol
is a doomdeath metal band from Finland, well technically it's more of a project than a band, as there are only 2 members
(of which one is a studio member). Pekka is known from other bands he plays in, like Sotahuuto.
He's a very talented musician,
as he clearly shows with this demo. It might only be 3 tracks long,
these 3 tracks are one of the best doomdeath I have heard in times.
It is melodic, emotional, dark and powerful. The production is top
notch for a demo, I have heard numerous full lengths with less good
production than this demo. And not only is the production great, so is
the musicianship on this release.
The first track, Desolate (which you can also here on the myspace of Sawol)
starts of with a very peaceful melody,
building up an atmosphere, one to be powered up by a distorted riff and
mighty vocals. Pekkas vocals are great, he uses mostly grunts,
yet has some growls from time to time that reach the mid-high section
too.
The drums on this demo are well executed, seems he really knew who he
could ask to drum on this release, and it might not be a double-bass
assault album, but the drums played fit the music in a great way. He
might use a bit cymbals for my taste on some places though. The songs
flow extremely well, they are all of good quality and really make me
long for more. This album is my favourite late night album of the
moment,
when I'm browsing around online at night, this is what comes out of my
headphones. If this is what he can reach with a demo, then I'm sure
that his next release, whenever that will be, will be of superb quality.
The art is simple, as is the logo, but it doesn't need to be more than that, as it all comes as 1 big package that really fits.
Fans of Paramaecium, Morphia or other doomdeath bands, be sure to check this out, if not, you're seriously missing out.



Review by Matt (January 21 - 2008)
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Wed Feb 27, 2008 4:01 pm

Wow... Listening to this now.. I am loving it!!!

Great music. I like the vocals too.. kind of reminds me of Ian Arkley
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Thu Feb 28, 2008 3:54 am

yeah, when I found them I was surprised by the quality of it.
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Tue Apr 22, 2008 7:36 am

Mar De Grises
Draining the Waterheart (Firebox Records)




Chilean Gothic Doom Metal. This is the simplest, most concise description of Mar De Grises’ (Sea Of Gray) music. All the requisite elements are present to warrant this description as well. Within the 64 minute release, we find plenty of slow tempos, sad, depressing melodies, Death Metal vocals & an overall darkly romantic vibe.

Now, depending on your taste this is the kind of album that will either bore one to tears or drive them there with its passion & conviction. Some purveyors of the genre will love this album for its pure rendition of the style, others will hate it for being more of the same when they crave something new. I’ll say that if you are one of the latter then you’d best be on your way. Draining The Waterheart stays true to its chosen genre and does a fine job and flying said flag. 2 of the 8 tracks here are sung in Spanish which, with these vocals, is nearly impossible to decipher let alone recognize. But, follow along with the lyric sheet and improve your bilingual skills. There are plenty of free online translators to help. The English lyrics are the usual poetic fare and fit the vibe of the music nicely.

Some bands seek to innovate while some bands just want to make the best music they can in the genre of their choosing. Mar De Grises plays good, strong, heavy music and fans of the style will find more to love inside this band’s dark embrace. Fans of Shape Of Despair, Draconian, My Dying Bride & the like take note.
[Visit the band's website]
Written by Shawn Pelata
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Tue Apr 22, 2008 7:37 am

Dead Man
Euphoria (Meteor City Records)




Hailing from Sweden, Dead Man also sounds like it hails from about 3 decades ago. Taking its cues from Psychedelic bands like Jefferson Airplane and, to a certain extent, Pink Floyd while also flirting with a darker ambience (think Black Sabbath’s “Planet Caravan”), Dead Man have crafted an album that is as much of a head trip as it is a solid dose of Rock.

“The Wheel” finds the band at its most Floyd-like with a spooky, swirling intro diving into a subtle, subdued groove. Opening track “Today” kicks off the album by easing the listener into the atmosphere of the album as a whole, as opposed to hitting them over the head with noise. I hear hints of Santana in this one. “High Or Low” finds the band jumping into a sort of tribal groove as the vocalist does his best Jim Morrison impressions. I think you get the idea.

Overall, I think fans of bands like the ones I mentioned already, as well as fans of Psychedelic/Stoner Rock in general will get a kick out of this record. It’s a record that’s all about vibe, and that’s never really a bad thing. Turn on, tune in, drop out.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Shawn Pelata
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Fri Oct 17, 2008 7:00 am

http://www.doom-metal.com/reviews.php?r=947

Memory Garden - Carnage Carnival
2008 Vic Records



Memory Garden has been cranking out its own brand of Traditional Doom Metal (laced with Power Metal) for well over 10 years now. With its fifth release (and first since 2000) 'Carnage Carnival', the band proves itself to be a lasting force in the Metal scene. It’s easy to expect great things when the band sports former members of Memento Mori, Nightingale and Abstrakt Algebra, and 'Carnage Carnival' doesn’t disappoint.

The guitars are dense and tight, the tempos are mid-paced to slow with good doses of double-kick drumming and the vocals, provided by one Stafan Berglund, are melodic and powerful. The title track opens the album with a strong combination of riff and melody. 'Dominion' drops a strong Melodic Doom riff and has a good, catchy chorus. They crank up the Power Metal influence and double-kick tempos on 'Another Night' while still retaining a dark atmosphere. The same can be said for 'The Beast Within' with its ultra-melodic, twin guitar opening lick and head-banging tempo. The nearly 7-minute closer 'Nameless' brings back a little more Doom with an angry riff and dark, brooding melodies. Overall, the sound reminds me of a cross between mid-era Candlemass and later Tad Morose... I think I hear hints of Morgana Lefay in there as well.

This time around, Memory Garden brings the Doom more in atmosphere with an all around ominous, brooding vibe despite the lack of snail-paced tempos. Honestly, it’s about as far to the edges of the Doom genre as a band can be and still be included. Regardless, 'Carnage Carnival' is a fine offering of dark, menacing Metal music. Put it on your list.
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Thu Oct 23, 2008 7:21 am

ETHEREAL DIRGE - Warm The Globe
http://www.doom-metal.com/reviews.php?r=958

THE WANDERING MIDGET - The Serpent Coven
http://www.doom-metal.com/reviews.php?r=959
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Shawn Eat Snake
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Mon Nov 03, 2008 9:00 am

THE WOUNDED KINGS - Embrace Of The Narrow House
http://www.doom-metal.com/reviews.php?r=976

MY SILENT WAKE - A Garland Of Tears
http://teethofthedivine.com/site/reviews/my-silent-wake-a-garland-of-tears/
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Stained Glass Flames
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Sat Dec 06, 2008 11:31 pm

Hey, Shawn, just read your review of OCEAN - Pantheon of the Lesser on dm.com - excellent review!! They are one of my favorites, and it's nice to see them getting heaped with accolades (including yours, which was very well written Smile )... helps me to know I'm not biased just because they're from my town...
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SabbSteve
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Location : In the misty morning,on the edge of time
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PostSubject: Re: Doom/Stoner Reviews   Sun Dec 07, 2008 1:18 am

Seems like no one ever reads my blogs so I thought I would post this here since maybe not EVERYONE knows of Solitude,I will accept nothing less than global recognition Twisted Evil


INTO THE OAKEN HALLS- Epic Doom Reviews
Category: Music


As the sun fades to black,the weeping sky sheds its tears of acid rain-a sorrow made by the hate and greed of man.Thus....the apocalypse begins.This, the third epic by Solitude,is the prelude to destruction and contains some of their darkest work yet.Possessing an ancient mythic quality not unlike Black Sabbath(who inadvertently began doom metal) and Candlemass(who refined it in the 80's),Solitude stands as one of the genre's most talented bands.Slow but not boring,Solitude achieves an almost hypnotic heaviness with cuts like"Haunting" and "Eternal."Another new classic,"Pawns Of Anger",tells the fate of fools driven by selfish ambition-fools who use and are used,all set to a heavy rhythm with a vintage Solitude feel.Revealing a more experimental side,"9th Day Awakening" contains a sitar solo that gives the song a Middle Eastern flavor and provides an interesting bridge to the return of the doom."In the misty morning,on the edge of time,we've lost the rising sun......" Sabbath's "Children Of The Sea"

Sabbath Steve

This is my original Solitude Aeturnus review for "Through The Darkest Hour" with only slight editing,it was and still is one of my favorites !

Does the word Sabbath appear too much in the review Shocked .......nah... Razz
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