Thursday, January 3, 2013


Ataraxia - Il Fantasma Dell'Opera
Avantgarde Music, 1996
Genre: ...Not sure... Opera?

1.È Il Fantasma? Part 1
2. È Il Fantasma? Part 2
3. La Nuova Margherita
4. Il Palco N. 5
5. Il Violino Incantato
6. Faust In Una Sala Maledetta
7. Al Ballo Mascherato
8. La Lira Di Apollo
9. Il Signore Delle Botole
10. Nei Sotterranei Dell'Opera
11. Le Ore Rosa Di Mazenderan
12. Fine Degli Amori Del Mostro

Symphonic Dark Metal?… … … Now, let’s analyze how this is wrong.  These three words were used to describe the album a website my friend, Noel, ordered it from.  I mean Symphonic Dark Metal actually sounds like a pretty cool style to listen to.  Imagine our surprise when one, out of these three words, actually described the album.

Symphonic?  Well, it is absolutely symphonic; in fact I would say it is all symphonic.  From what I heard of this album there was nothing metal about it.  I actually only made it about mid way through track five because I just could not go on with it.  In fact I’m surprised military generals don’t keep this thing handy as a torture device, I guarantee, after twenty minutes of this and the captive will be willing to tell you anything you want. 

I believe that the most shocking aspect of listening to this is the vocals.  They’re all Opera vocals.  It’s certainly not good Opera either.  I don’t know if the artists were going for an eccentric operatic feel, but it certainly failed miserably.  The single most impressive feature of this vocal method, is how incredibly annoying it sounds.  I think I actually prefer the vocal work on the early Mayhem releases over this. 

Dark? Certainly not, there’s not one single sounding sinister aspect of this music.  Furthermore, after listening to the opening instrumental I go the sudden urge to go play Zelda on my Nintendo Entertainment System.  Yes, the original Zelda!  In fact I would compare the music to bad midi driven keyboards.  I would much rather listen to the Super Mario Brothers Soundtrack over this, at least it is well composed and the dungeon levels actually have some semblance of sounding “dark.”  I suppose to a Ska fan Ataraxia would sound “dark,” but lets not forget I’ve listened to Limbonic Art’s “In Abhorrence Dementia.”  By comparison Ataraxia makes me think of bunny rabbits and rainbows, which is hardly the embodiment of darkness.

Metal?  How the hell anyone could ever possibly confuse this with metal is beyond me.  It’s an entirely keyboard driven release… this is not used to create metal at all.  Granted, keyboards are used in metal, but they are hardly the purpose of creating metal.  Keyboards are used as an accent piece to give the metal a symphonic/classical feel to the music.  Take out the guitars and drums and we are not left with metal.  Conclusion: this is symphonic.

Lyrical concept.  Well I wasn’t even planning on looking at these, but I was bored before class and I believe I can sum this up in an equation format:

Bad writing + unoriginal concept = Terrible lyrics

Supposedly this album is based on the Phantom of the Opera… while that’s great and all… but it’s boring.  Not to mention this has been done before.  Let me emphasize they are not doing anything new.  Furthermore, their view of the concept with their idiot characters Christine and Erik is one of the most inane renditions ever.  Christine spends a good portion of her time holding curtains for some reason, so how this is supposed to be “dark” I really have no idea.

Now you must remember this review is based on the first five tracks.  If I actually finished listening to the album I would not be here to review it because I would have just killed myself a long time ago.  Noel even described that he became physically angry by track three because it was so horrible.  Let me reiterate something from my opening paragraph about the descriptions incredible inaccuracy.  One out of three of the describing words is correct.  I realized that if I only got a third of my tests in school correct… well then I wouldn’t be in school for very long would I?  You can try this out for yourself.  Next time you have a test get a third of it correct.  You’ll be scoring in at a whopping 33.33%.  I’m sure your teachers and parents will be very proud of your accomplishments as a student.

Here you go... I found this really annoying, because I am that evil:

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