Thursday, August 28, 2014

Anaal Nathrakh


Anaal Nathrakh - Domine Non es Dignus
Season of Mist, 2004
Genre: Black/Death Metal

1. I Wish I could Vomit Blood on You... ...People
2. The Oblivion Gene
3. Do Not Speak
4. Procreation of the Wretched
5. To Err is Human, to Dream Futile
6. Revaluation of All Values (Tractatus Alogico Misanthropicus)
7. The Final Destruction of Dignity (Die Letzten Tage der Menschheit)
8. Swallow the World
9. This Cannot be the End
10. Rage, Rage Against the Dying of the Light



After an EP that I found lack luster, I was beginning to worry that Anaal Nathrakh only had one really great release in them. Sometimes that happens, a band puts out such a devastating debut, they just can't ever seem to overcome that first album. Luckily, Anaal Nathrakh have a lot more to offer than just the one album. Enter "Domine Non es Dignus", which is a very proper follow-up to "The Codex Necro" and actually does make some effort to advance their sound.

Aside from the intro, which I always skip, this is a great album. The intro is just someone throwing up with all kinds of effects put on the recording. It's actually vastly annoying. However, once we get into "The Oblivion Gene" we realize why we've all picked up this album. They've really made some advances from the EP. "Domine Non es Dignus" returns to the intensity of "The Codex Necro", but they managed to create a far more thought out sounding album. It doesn't sound as chaotic or frantic compared to the debut. Here they also begin to back off from the harsh Black Metal assault and infuse a bit more Death Metal into their riffing style and sound. With this they've also infused a level of atmosphere into some of their compositions, which makes for a much more dynamic listen. Due to this "Domine Non es Dignus" doesn't come off as insane and chaotic, instead it feels a bit more tempered and focused. This isn't, necessarily, a bad thing, since Anaal Nathrakh keep a good level of interest in their writing, so it works pretty well in the end. Still, I'm not sure something as uncompromising as "The Codex Necro" would be easy to pull off again. Vitriol's vocals are as menacing as ever and he certainly rounds out his skill levels with many tracks, even including clean vocals in some sections, which we were first introduced to on the EP. There's even one part of "Do Not Speak" where he absolutely nails the vocal style of John Tardy from Obituary, and I've never heard someone hit that tone as perfectly... other than Tardy himself! That was certainly a pleasant surprise.

In the end, while this is not a return to "The Codex Necro" insanity, they do aim to up the powerful nature of their music with this and it hits hard in that regard. They definitely are trying to play around with the balance of the insanity and the more thought out writing approaches and "Domine Non es Dignus" yields quite the experience in this regard. I really have no complains about this album and I think it is one of their finest. I quite enjoy their new approach far more than what they were doing on the EP, so perhaps that's why this stands out a lot for me.


Anaal Nathrakh - When Fire Rains Down from the Sky, Mankind will Reap as it has Sown
Mordgrimm, 2003
Genre: Black/Death Metal

1. Cataclysmic Nihilism
2. How the Angels Fly in (We can Never be Forgiven)
3. Never Fucking Again
4. Genesis of the Antichrist
5. Atavism
6. When Fire Rains Down from the Sky, Mankind will Reap as it has Sown
BBC Rock Show Live 23, March 2005:
7. Human, All too Fucking Human
8. Swallow the World
9. Do Not Speak


I remember when this came out a friend of mine had an original copy of it, so I was able to give it a listen before I purchased it. Initially I thought it was a pretty weak release and it wasn't until years later when I wanted to fill in my Anaal Nathrakh collection that I eventually purchased a copy of this. The version I have is the 2005 edition published by Earache, which includes the BBC show recorded in 2005.

I after "The Codex Necro" Anaal Nathrakh were left wondering what they could possibly do next. They had already marked their footprint on the metal scene, but what could possibly be next. On this release they clearly wanted to keep their core sound there and in many ways this doesn't really deviate much from the original path. I feel like a little more Death Metal has started creeping into their sound a little bit, but in the grand scheme of Anaal Nathrakh, I'm not really convinced this is a great effort on their part. For some reason, things don't sound as insane and frantic. The shift in this quality to their music feels like they've left something truly missing from their sound. My favorite song on here is probably "Never Fucking Again", because it has this wonderful riff that is vaguely reminiscent of "Submission is for the Weak", but it doesn't have the same edge to it... so in that regard it's also a little disappointing. I think in some tracks they were trying to go for a more haunting and dark edge, but it just doesn't fit amidst all the ferocity they try to include from the first album. I think this is certainly the case with the inclusion of clean vocals on the title track. While Vitriol's vocals are, as expected, good even in this regard, it just didn't help this release any.

The bonus section is mostly taken off of "Domine Non es Dignus", but they open with a track from "The Codex Necro". Apparently, Nick Barker and Shane Embury helped out to fill out the performance. These are extremely interesting versions to listen to, because you can really hear how much is done in studio. They do a good job capturing the original sound, but it feels a lot more raw and minimal compared to the original recording. Vitriol's vocals sound just as devastating here, proving he can really pull this kind of material off in a live setting.

I really hope Anaal Nathrakh can find a solid direction for their sound after their immense debut. Some fans may enjoy this, but I think its only good for the die-hards that really need a complete discography. This just doesn't have the same fire as before. I really hope they can get back some of the intensity for the next full-length.


Anaal Nathrakh - The Codex Necro
Mordgrimm, 2001
Genre: Black Metal

1. The Supreme Necrotic Audnance
2. When Humanity is Cancer
3. Submission is for the Weak
4. Pandemonic Hyperblast
5. Paradigm Shift - Annihilation
6. The Technogoat
7. Incipid Flock
8. Human, All too Fucking Human
9. The Codex Necro







Here is the first exposure I've ever had to Anaal Nathrakh, and at first glance I remember thinking it was pretty good. I mostly remember it being outrageously intense. Anaal Nathrakh have managed to bring the foundation set out in the demos into a far more cohesive light. Instead of really choosing a particular direction, they ended up blending a lot of the earlier material together in a sort of immense melting pot. It makes for quite an incredible debut in the grand scheme of things.

Now, I do agree with a lot of reviewers out there who say Anaal Nathrakh isn't really doing anything new. And that is true, they don't have a new take on the riffing in Black Metal or the way instruments are performed, everything is pretty old hat in that regard. However, when this came out I still felt this was incredibly different from anything else I had heard at the time. It really stood out in my mind as being the most chaotically intense album I had ever heard. Track after track of this album is just an unrelenting punishment, and its interesting to note that not all of the tracks are played at top speed. Despite having sections of songs that are quite slow, they always manage to keep up that devastating essence throughout this recording. I feel like this is one of the major missteps in Marduk's "Panzer Division Marduk", for Anaal Nathrakh have released an album that is far beyond the normal levels of extreme. Even though the general performance isn't hugely different, its really the combination of elements that does this album justice. Vitriol's vocal performance is off the charts in terms of frantic insanity. Some songs have me wondering if he's falling on the "Slowly We Rot" approach from early Obituary where he's just screaming and not actually saying anything. That being said, another aspect of the heaviness is generated by the down tuned and crushing guitar tone, which bears resemblance to Death Metal almost. The riffing is almost entirely Black Metal though. Appropriately to add to this insane atmosphere you will a bit sampling from the movie Event Horizon, which is quite apt as being one of the more terrifying movies of its time.

"The Codex Necro" is quite the whirlwind of an experience. To say their debut is a success is an understatement, especially by 2014 as I write this given their well known appeal in the scene. I feel that "The Codex Necro" holds a special place in my mind as a benchmark of intensity. In some ways Anaal Nathrakh would push the envelope further in the future... but they would never really recreate the intoxicating feel of "Submission is for the Weak".


Anaal Nathrakh - Total Fucking Necro
Leviaphonic Records, 1999
Genre: Black Metal

Anaal Nathrakh: 1999
1. Anaal Nathrakh
2. Necrodeath
3. Ice Blasting Storm Winds
4. Carnage (Mayhem Cover)
Total Fucking Necro: 1999
5. The Supreme Necrotic Audnance
6. Satanarchrist
7. L.E.T.H.A.L.: Diabolic
8. De Mysteriis dom Sathanas (Mayhem Cover)
9. The Technogoat
Bonus:
10. Necrogeddon



I don't own Anaal Nathrakh's demos individually, instead I picked up this compilation shortly after hearing their album "The Codex Necro". I missed out on the original pressing of this release as well, but I managed to obtain the Rage of Achilles version, which is much better than the original. The track listing above reflects the Rage of Achilles version. The version I own has the complete two demos with all the cover songs and bonus track "Necrogeddon", which is the pre-cursor of a track later used on "Domine Non es Dignus". After hearing "The Codex Necro" their material quickly became in high demand. To give you an idea of how old this is, the official Anaal Nathrakh website is housed in a geocities location as stated by the booklet!

I'm actually surprised it took two demos before Anaal Nathrakh got a contract, because after hearing the self-titled demo you can tell this band was really onto something interesting. The band is a duo starring Irrumator on all instruments and programming and V.I.T.R.I.O.L. on vocals... whom I will just call Vitriol at this point. Screw all those periods. One of the shocking things on this release is that this has some of the more realistic sounding drum programming for its time. Even though all this technology was being used Irrumator still managed to keep the music extremely raw, hence the title of the compilation "Total Fucking Necro". The self-titled demo actually has a lot of very catchy and groove styled elements to its style, which is not the norm for late 90's Black Metal. The second demo is truly a shining moment for he project... opening with "The Supreme Necrotic Audnance" we hear this band has already evolved in such a short amount of time. They've seriously upped the intensity level and Vitriol's vocal performance is even more menacing than before. Strangely I feel that "Satanarchrist" mellows out the eel of the albums a little bit. It's a far more melodic song and just doesn't follow the punishing atmosphere of the opening track. From here they proceed to perform one of the better covers of "De Mysteriis dom Sathanas" out there. Part of me sort of wishes they would redo this with their more modern sound, but there's just no replacing the raw viciousness of this I think. Vitriol does a great Atilla for a little while, but then falls into doing his own vocal interpretation, which is really what makes this shine. Its one thing to copy, but can you add your own twist? And he certainly does and the result is something far more frantic than the original. It certainly makes for a great atmosphere.

Between the two demos we have a lot of variation for the project. Catchy sections, some more somber piece, and other absolutely punishing and menacing tracks. Everything has great riffing, but I wonder if they can harness all this power they can apparently wield in their sound. It's obviously time for a full-length to be unleashed next, but we'll see what shape that will take. If I had heard these demos first, I would be wondering what the answer to this question would be.


Pure


Pure - Kingdom of Wrath
Humanity's Plague Productions, 2014
Genre: Black Metal

1. The Nightside Throne
2. Astral Vanity
3. The Red Moon
4. Shroud of Hate
5. Imara
6. This is Life
7. The Last Ritual









If you are familiar with the band Borgne, then you know this musician has a lot to offer. Maybe not in all of his projects... since looking through his roster on Metal-Archives gives a huge smattering across many genres. However, with Pure he delves into the realms of raw Black Metal, which is something I'm very interested in. The name of the project really isn't that great, even if it makes sense given what he's playing. There must be hundreds of bands in existence with this name out there... The art direction certainly fits the project and hearkens back to the mid-90's of Black Metal for me. The booklet contains pictures with just a single line of lyrics here and there to be vague, but enough for us to get a sense of the lyrical concept.

Despite being listed as raw, the recording quality is actually pretty decent. The guitars are a little fuzzier than usual in his later Borgne material. Now that Borgne has trended into the full Atmospheric Black Metal route, Pure reminds me a bit of Borgne's early days, like "II", for example. So, if you've missed that furious harsh edge in the Borgne sound, its being sort of resurrected here. Sometimes the modern version of Borgne can't be escaped in the atmospheric edge of some songs like "The Red Moon" or the length of some of these tracks being nearly ten minutes in cases.  This still has the same high quality in song writing, so it makes for a great album. It's a pretty dynamic experience wending through passages of sheer intensity, while having melancholic sections that bring the listener to a nice lull in the storm of hatred. Tracks like "This is Life" have riffs that really stand out to me and are simply exceptional songs.

While this may not be the "raw" Black Metal people would expect, it's still quite good. It's not raw like Moonblood, or Horna, or any of those bands, so if that's what you're expecting you might be a little disappointed. Still, the strength of writing holds this up quite well, which is something I've come to expect from this musician. It's actually nice to see him return to a more vicious style of Black Metal, perhaps waxing nostalgic as many musicians do after years developing their newer sounds. If you were a fan of the earlier Borgne material this is a must have.





Absolutus


Absolutus - Ostendit Quam Nihil Sumus
Goatowarex, 2005
Genre: Black Metal

1. The Scale of Nothingness
2. The Ascending Plague
3. Dislocation of Time
4. Until the Conclusion of Ages












I think this was initially a random purchase on my behalf... probably motivated that it was released by Goatowarex who has released some very good Black Metal over the years. That being said, you should not expect a revolutionary work here, instead you should expect an exercise in the beauty of minimalism. I remember putting it on the first time I heard it and thinking it was pretty decent, but I've never really sat down and given this the proper listen it truly deserved... until now. The booklet is just okay. It's only a folded piece of paper, with, I think, only some of the lyrics inside.

Absolutus do something rather interesting with the minimalist Black Metal they perform. It's heavily rooted in "Under the Funeral Moon" era Darkthrone, albeit probably a bit more well thought out at times. From here they construct only four songs, but the whole album clocks in at over forty minutes in length. Now, before you say you can't take the same riffing for ten minutes, Absolutus have written some extremely good material here and for whatever reason it's perfect. The overall presentation, down to the vocals even reminds me a bit of Trimonium, who is known for their very epic riffing style. Absolutus basically reproduce that feeling here in their songs, but bring a sort of Atmospheric immersion to their art. Of which, the only complaint I have is the lack of variation in the vocals and the vocal tone isn't that compelling with the music, but these are my complaints about Trimonium as well. If their riffing wasn't so incredible, it would probably not be a very interesting project in the end. I think the vocal tone is intentional, going for more of an Abbath approach to the voice. For some reason when I first heard this I thought it reminded me of Moonblood... but upon further reflection, I feel ridiculous for thinking that in some ways.

In the end if you're looking for an interesting take on very traditional Black Metal, you may be pleasantly surprised with how good this album is. While it may not be something to listen to over and over, but if you revisit this release sparingly it is likely you will find it enjoyable every time. It is well executed minimalist art and in that realm it stands very strong.


Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Demonic


Demonic - The Empire of Agony
Necropolis Records, 1997
Genre: Black Metal

1. The Everlasting Shadow
2. A Dark Journey towards Desolation
3. His Eyes Burn Hate
4. Evoke the Demon Lord
5. Diabolic Blood War
6. Wandering through a Cold Mist
7. Spell of the Witchdemon
8. Lead Us Into Darkness
9. Torment their Christian Souls with Infernal Powers




After waiting a couple years Demonic finally unleashes their debut full-length, featuring their new logo with added inverted crosses. Now the unfortunate thing for this band after this release is they didn't release anything else, then with the demise of Necropolis Records, I think it has sentenced these releases to be forgotten by the larger community over a decade later. This is not so surprising to me, Demonic's music is, likely, only special in a nostalgic sense of the late 90's Black Metal scene. I always thought Necropolis did the bands art justice and that is no different for "The Empire of Agony". This comes as a nice digipak version with a full booklet featuring lyrics and band pics.

Demonic basically delivered everything you could ever want out of a Black Metal album. But I think its a "want" restricted to the bare minimum of Black Metal, now that I revisit this release. It has some solid riffing, but a lot of it is quite general, when compared to the great scheme of the genre today. Demonic focuses mostly on a hateful atmosphere, but every so often things delve into this a dark and haunting feel as keyboards enhance their sound in songs like "A Dark Journey towards Desolation" and "Diabolic Blood War". In other respects, I feel their songs are a bit on the short side, many not going much beyond three minutes. I think this gives the experience more of a Death Metal feel, because some tracks are just over before you know it! So, there's no really getting lost in the atmosphere as the album progresses. In their defense, I don't think we really consciously thought about writing Black Metal song like that back then, we just wrote songs that sounded good to us. The majority of the material is well written though, so it really does make for a solid Black Metal release. Most of the tracks from "Lead Us Into Darkness" have been re-recorded for this album as well. The only one that doesn't appear is "Når Mørket Faller", so that's still worth hearing on some levels. Also, the drums aren't as ridiculously thunderous on "The Empire of Agony", which was sort of disappointing, but overall the production values are a little more balanced.

In many respects, I can understand why this has been lost to history, in others it makes me sad. This was a great time of Black Metal for me in high school. I think I was a Sophomore at this point and the 90's Black Metal scene was going very strong and releases were becoming more available in the U.S. Not to mention Necropolis Records was going strong and bringing bands around for tours quite often, so that made this era special, and with all that Demonic sits in there for me. I'm sure people will still garner some enjoyment from their style today, but I think many will consider this generic by today's standards... at least until you look at that date of release. Even then, it was still probably generic, but not as much as today!


Demonic - Lead Us Into Darkness
Necropolis Records, 1995
Genre: Black Metal

1. Spell of the Witchdemon
2. Unholy Gates of Limbo
3. His Eyes Burns Hate
4. Når Mørket Faller











Demonic is a Black Metal band out of Norway from the early 90's that has probably been lost to the annals of history. I missed out on getting their 1994 demo, but everything was re-pressed on this "Lead Us Into Darkness" EP with one extra track called "His Eyes Burns Hate".  So there is really no need for me to track down the original tape. The major reason this wound up in my collection is because it was released by Necropolis Records. This label was pretty well known for signing really good Black Metal acts in the 90's, so I usually purchased their releases when they came out.

This was recorded in the now legendary Grieghallen Studio by Pytten and it has that production quality similar to a lot of the Norwegian bands. The drums are absolutely thunderous, similar to what you'd hear on "De Mysteriis Dom Sathanas". The demo parts actually remind me a bit of if Enslaved played a style of Black Metal that didn't involve any Viking themes or Folk styled elements. There is a bit of synth being used throughout the album, and this makes seem a bit more like Enslaved's "Frost", but this is well before that album even came out! Demonic have more of a Gorgoroth feels to their atmosphere and approach though, since it falls in the realms of being more hateful sounding.

This is an excellent demo and I can certainly see why Necropolis would pick them up right after hearing it. Demonic may never be considered a giant of the scene, but I always thought they did a really great job with their music. Maybe not a monumental classic, but it's a classic to me in many ways.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Eïs

Previously Known as Geïst

Eïs - Wetterkreuz
Lupus Lounge, 2012
Genre: Atmospheric Black Metal

Disc 1:
1. Mann aus Stein
2. Auf Kargen Klippen
3. Wetterkreuz
4. Am Abgrund
5. Bei den Sternen
6. Thou Whose Face hath Felt the Winter's Wind (Sun of the Sleepless Cover)

Disc 2: The Quarrymen Selections
1. Captivus
2. Auf Kargan Klippen
3. Wetterkreuz (Odyssey Remix)
4. Am Abgrund (Laudanum Induced Mix)
5. 72 Seconds

Three years seems to be the right time frame for Eïs to put together an album. This is the follow-up to the rather monumental "Galeere" and Eïs trend further down that path. It doesn't look like "Galeere" is being repressed under the new name any time soon. When I saw that "Wetterkreuz" was set to be released, I immediately ordered a copy of this limited two disc edition. It comes housed in a beautiful digibook and is limited to 850 copies. The booklet is beautiful, but my only complaint is that it is glued into the book, so you can't look at the booklet separately. It seems Eïs has also undergone further line-up changes and is now down to a two piece. Luckily this doesn't seem to have marred the compositional quality since "Galeere" and in fact Eïs has only grown since that time.

"Wetterkreuz" is certainly their strongest album so far and with the atmosphere ever improving it makes Eïs even a more to be paying attention to. It seems the nautical theme of "Galeere" has given way to a sort of cosmic coldness. In order to evoke this Eïs blends together a sound that really works well together. They take their usual approach to the work, but I hear serious influence from ColdWorld and Darkspace. The atmosphere, I hear touches of the ColdWorld style, but the Ambience driving some areas I feel is more of a Darkspace/Paysage d'Hiver blend in a lot of ways. However, Eïs has always had more of an uplifting atmosphere at times, so they take those styles in a rather drastically different direction. This isn't bad, it just gives the music a more chilling epic quality. Eïs also writes in a more melodic fashion similar to Der Weg einer Freiheit and Lunar Aurora at times. All this gives Eïs their own special sound that was first being developed on "Galeere" and "Wetterkreuz" is another chapter in, what I hope, will be a legacy of really stellar material.

The second disc is a very strange thing and if you're looking for more Black Metal, this isn't the place to look. If you're a fan of Ambient, however, then this may pique your interests a little bit. Usually I get a little worried when I see "remix" attached to songs. These days I tend to expect full on techno remixes of metal songs, but that isn't entirely what happened with these. Instead these seem to be more Ambient remixes of the songs, which really fits the material perfectly. Some parts are outright haunting. When electronic drums kick in they remind me of something I would hear off of The Axis of Perdition's "Deleted Scenes from the Transition Hospital". The only track that stands out as having a far more Techno aspect is "Wetterkreuz (Odyssey Remix)" and there are parts that have that Techno styled drumming, but with this atmosphere it reminds me of something you could hear off the Pi motion picture soundtrack. I suppose that really is the interesting aspect of this second disc, it attempts to harness the atmosphere without the Black Metal. So, many tracks are chilling and spacey in  their presentation. Overall, it is pretty well done, but I'm not sure how often I'll pull this disc out to listen to in the grand scheme of things. "Wetterkreuz" itself is, naturally better, and I have stronger Ambient releases in my collection already, but this is an interesting idea and I do like the approach. Perhaps if one artist attempted to capture the Ambient essence, this would come off as a stronger second disc, but with the multiple artists you get a rather varied interpretation. I think that variation is what marred the Ambience I really look for when I delve into that style.

In the end "Wetterkreuz" is one of the finest albums I've heard this year. It will likely be in my top 10 for 2012. If you're just finding Eïs, you've started at quite a high point, but "Galeere" is another album you should check out as well. While "Wetterkreuz" heavily improves from that release. Eïs have given us another beautiful and encompassing album.


Eïs - Kainsmal
Lupus Lounge, 2011
Genre: Black Metal

1. Erben aller Einsamkeit
2. Einst War es Mein
3. Lykoi
4. Stille Wasser
5. In Pans Hallen
6. Kainsmal
7. Carpathian Forest (Carpathian Forest Cover)








At the same time the "Patina" re-release hit, we also go the "Kainsmal" re-release. Naturally, I purchased both when they came out. This is really same kind of format as the prior review. It's a two disc set with the first disc being a revised version and the second being the original version. They go a little bit further with this re-release and offer a Carpathian Forest Cover as a bonus track.

This one offers some even heavier work done on the booklet. Even though the cover has remained largely the same, the booklet has been done in much greater detail. Again, the guitars have been heavily re-recorded, giving this album an almost entirely different experience for the listeners. I'm glad to see that Alboin commented on the split with Ainvar in the liner notes, because that was something I was quite curious about. It doesn't go into any grave detail, but it does address there was quite a problem with the split. In the end, this is the "Kainsmal" version to hear. It's much stronger than the first and "Kainsmal" was a much better and more cohesive composition when compared to the first, in my opinion. I'm pleased to see re-releases that are actually worth my time to get rather than just some remastering.


Eïs - Patina
Lupus Lounge, 2011
Genre: Black Metal

1. Snow White
2. Wanderer bei Fels una Fjord
3. Thanatos Phobein
4. Winters Schwingeenschlag
5. Norn
6. Patina
7. Jingian
8. Spätsommerabende








It seems this band is not having the greatest luck with their band names. From Eismalsott to Geïst and now to Eïs, this time being forced because there is already another German band named Geïst. With this problem requiring an immediate change after their 2009 master-piece "Galeere", I think the band tries to make the best of it and has used this to re-launch some of their earliest material. Rather than just release a new album under their new name and probably confuse people, they first re-release their first two albums from the Geïst name. Don't worry, they actually make it worth your time to get these and these are absolutely the editions you'll want to get ahold of if you are a new fan of the band.

Here we have the "Patina" re-release. It's a two CD edition of this album and the first disc is the "revised 2010 version", which has quite a lot of changes. There has been some re-tracking of guitars, fixing mistakes here and there, and just making the guitar performance all around more solid. The songs, as written, haven't changed at all, they've just had their recorded parts improved. They've also given this a major re-mixing and you can tell its been overhauled when compared to the original version. Then they've finished it off with the obligatory re-mastering that most re-releases only give us. That wasn't enough for Eïs, they went the extra mile to give us something a little more for the fans of their music. They've also redone all of the art on the release and redone the booklet entirely. In the jewel case inlay there is a little interview, of sorts, where Alboin recollects what it took to make this release. It was really interesting to read this and see how this album developed in the early days and their problems with labels and recording.

It really is a huge improvement over the original "Patina" experience, which I thought was only okay. Sure, it had potential, but with this edition you feel that a lot more. There are still pieces that are out of place and it is certainly not as mature as "Galeere", of course. Some of the tracks still feel out of place with their riffs amidst some extremely atmospheric tracks, but all that can be read about in my original review. Either way, I did enjoy revisiting this album with all the new improvements.