Friday, July 13, 2012

Palantir - Secrets Of The Arcane (2011 Local Band By Request)

Palantir - Secrets Of The Arcane (2011) - Well, in the hopes of getting more recognition, I was sent this album by the band personally. So I’ll do what I do best, and review the damn thing already. I’ll also mention that all of this is being done by just one person. It’s quite impressive to say the least.

Honestly, the biggest factor on this album is the amount of melodies which are similar to Krallice, but a hell of a lot more beautiful. The first track on the disc showed some potential, but the second track, “The Storm Feeds The River” is absolutely brilliant, and could even stand on it’s own with no vocal content whatsoever. This very majestic piece is certainly going to make this band stand out among others who seem to perform metal along the same lines but wind up being far too brutal, and in the end it all sounds the same…senseless blasting and tired old riffs. At least here, there is a well dose of needed melody and even some rock tinges which help to give the disc some flavor.

I’ve heard plenty of black metal, and it still holds true that some of the best and most unique music is found right in one’s own backyard. Free from the taint of label demands, this one man band actually has a chance to make the kind of music that he wanted to make. I myself really enjoyed Wolves and Krallice and other such bands in the vein, but I definitely believe that this gentleman has a place in the metal scene as well.

The production quality is along the same lines as other bands in the vein, but the melodies are heard higher than everything else in the mix. The vocals on the disc seem to be akin to the bass lines, merely sounding like another instrument rather being the forefront, and that’s what I’ve always enjoyed about this sort of music. His scowl really accents the music, regardless of what the lyrics are about. (9/10 I don’t really pay attention much to the lyrics in the first place.)

The latter part of the disc is altogether different. In the beginning it sounds like very well crafted progressive black metal with some experimenting, but the last portion of the song “Sleeping With The Night Witch” is simply a great outro piece that goes into the epic “Pisces And Cancer I and II” which is a beautiful experimental piece, and contains some pure 70’s prog rock influence which is completely unexpected. Something Wolves would never try because it might “kill their kvlt nature.”

I always think that a true artist should have no boundaries, and this well-crafted, well produced album by a one many powerhouse, is certainly something to check out for all fans of black metal and progressive music worldwide.

5/5 (Brilliant, especially considering that this is a one man project!)

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