Release DetailsLABEL Momentum Scandinavia
RELEASED ON 2/1/2007
A Decade Of Thoughts
posted on 11/2007 By:
No scores on this one because A Decade of Thoughts spans Pantokrator’s history from 1996 to 2006, so each of the above categories varies depending on which era is being examined. Interestingly enough, however, ADoT is limited to a mere 850 copies, which means fans of these death metallers have already gobbled up quite a few of ‘em, if not most, but that’s of little consequence because newcomers should probably introduce themselves to these Swedes via their sophomore full-length Aurum, courtesy of Whirlwind (see: Lengsel), and work their way backwards. Regardless, Pantokrator prove their worth here.
Aside from the previously unreleased songs (“Punish the Evil,” “Leviathan,” “Nebuchadnezzar,” “Separated by Night,” “Cut into Pieces,” “White Robes,” and “Psalm 29”) interspersed on this 14-track album, longtime aficionados will recognize “Unclean Plants” from their 1997 demo Unclean Plants / Ancient Path, “Come Let Us Flee” from 2001 EP Song of Solomon later unleashed as a split with fellow countrymen Sanctifica, “Bundsförvant,” “Gudablodets Kraft,” and “Tidevarv” from 2003 debut full-length Blod courtesy of Rivel (see: Crimson Moonlight), “Lamentation” from 2000 demo Allhärskare, and “Via Dolorosa” from 1998 demo Even Unto the Ends of the Earth.
While Pantokrator are largely a death metal unit, the demo selections possess a slight predilection for black and doom. Naturally, the songs culled from demos are rawer than their companions, and none impress nearly as much as mid-period tracks from Song of Solomon EP and Blod. The acoustic-led “Come Let Us Flee,” from the former, is tasteful DM done right. More than once – perhaps due to the Peter Espevoll-like growls – I felt as if this group was attempting to be Sweden’s multi-genre answer to Extol, and the inventive three from Blod further substantiate this comparison, although both bands do indeed have their distinguishing qualities. Similar melodies can be pinpointed, however. Also, citing Extol’s transition from death metal to neo-thrash to apparent hiatus/defunct status (considering the emphasis on Lengsel and Mantric), Pantokrator are now in the running to carry the Scandinavian, Christian death metal torch, if they aren’t already doing so.
The main drawback to A Decade of Thoughts is that one doesn’t receive a clear picture of many of their releases, especially their demos, because they only included a track from each. Nonetheless, certain excerpts demarcated as previously unreleased (“Punish the Evil” and “Separated by Night”) actually appeared on prior installments, which is curious, unless they’re newer or older versions of said songs. Also, the self-financed collection 1997-2000 contains all the demos, but good luck getting a hold of it. So, to conclude, I’d pick up Blod and Aurum before this.
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