Release DetailsLABEL N/A
RELEASED ON 12/6/2005
Darkness Shrouds The Hidden
posted on 1/2006 By:
Viking Black Death with shitty keyboards, not recommended
You tell me: is there anything more bitter than hearing a band you KNOW you should enjoy but being unable to because of some little quirk they threw into their sound? Yeah, there are. Lots and lots of things. Nevertheless, as a reviewer having to sit down and explain why a band that is otherwise very good needs to be avoided is akin to tasting one’s own bile.
Grimlet gets everything else so fucking right. Steady musicianship, inspired performance, quality recording and varied yet complimentary songwriting…yet for all they get right they got one thing so wrong it makes the record unlistenable to me. Keyboards. Not just incongruous or cheesy, but actively distracting and utterly out of place. Every time this fucker touches fingers to keys I stop listening to the song and try like hell to figure out where that other music is coming from. Is the TV on and the theme from Adams Family playing? Am I running some cheesy midi application I don’t know about? Is it tinitis?
What in the holy fuck were these guys thinking? Rarely have I, who has not had much patience with keyboards since Dennis DeYoung flitted oh so fairy like into my perception, heard such a pisspoor use of the ivories. They completely ruin what would have been a fantastic blackened Viking salted herring experience for me. The songs remind me of the best aspects of a Dimmu Borgir stripped of most of the gimmickry. This is however, very powerful and interesting from both a compositional and emotional standpoint. The band uses speedy riffing and chords in medium paced numbers with tempo changes and accents up the Greenland. The singer can death roar and shout blackly as the mood requires. All members are good at their machines - even the keyboardist. And all is complimented by a crisp, open and epic production.
But there is no escaping the decisions the keyboardist has made. His choice of when to accompany and with what type of sounds is just terrible. It takes the songs from above average and even great to cheesy and confusing and that has to be the bottom line. I ask the reader to consider the above comments very carefully, because there is a monster of a record lurking here, and if you believe the keyboard problem is something you can ignore, then I advise you to give this band some attention. The keys are truly the ONLY reason I won’t recommend this to the audience at large.
And if you are in the band and reading this; it’s not the fact that you have keys. It is how they are used. If it was an experiment that maybe just didn’t work, I implore you to look for a more complimentary way to inject synths into your sound. I desperately wanted to love this record.
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