Therion - Live In Midgård review
|Album:||Live In Midgård|
02. Invocation Of Naamah
03. Birth Of Venus Illegitima
04. Enter Vril-Ya
05. Riders Of Theli
06. Symphony Of The Dead
07. A Black Rose
08. The Return
09. Baal Reginon
10. Flesh Of The Gods
11. Seawinds [Accept cover]
13. In The Desert Of Set
01. The Wings Of The Hydra
03. The Secret Of The Runes
04. The Rise Of Sodom And Gomorrah
05. Summernight City [ABBA cover]
06. Beauty In Black
07. Seven Secrets Of The Sphinx
08. The Wine Of Aluqah
09. The Raven Of Dispersion
10. To Mega Therion
11. Cults Of The Shadow
Question: after the mesmerizing Secret of the Runes, what could be better? Answer: a double live album!! For those who still haven't heard about Therion [it's time guys, come on!], I just can describe their music as a delicious mix of old-school thrash metal and the most amazing symphonic parts ever. They're using true choirs and orchestras to make their music perfect, and it works! Unlike most live albums, Live in Midgard is in fact a compilation of several concerts across the world. And honestly, if you fear too much sound difference between the tracks, it's that you don't know how much of a perfectionist Christofer Johnsson is. Seeing the extended tracklist, you can ask yourself: "How could this album be as good as Secret of the Runes?" [as you remember that this album was perfect for its 'sound unity']. Here comes the answer.
The album starts with the outstanding 'Ginnungagap' and bang! You're already amazed... The real choir on stage is perfect, the musicians too. Johnsson's voice adds power to some instrumental parts with his "Hey! Hey! Hey!" [like in 'Invocation of Naamah']. Among this long tracklist, you encounter old Therion' songs such as 'Symphony of the Dead' [I love this one!] or 'Riders of Theli' but also some unusual covers such as 'Seawinds' [Accept] or 'Summernight City' [ABBA!!]. And by the way, one good thing about Therion: once they make a cover, that song sounds exactly as if Christofer Johnsson has written it! That's really amazing. Of course, the main part of the album shows once again the ability of the choir like in 'Birth of Venus Illegitima' or 'Enter Vril-Ya'. To make a good live album, you need an audience. And here this is no problem, you can hear it but only when it's necessary. There is no need to hear them too much while the choir is singing! 'Flesh of the Gods' remains one of my favorite songs on Live in Midgard while 'Schwarzalbenheim' is obviously one of the most elaborate symphonic tracks. 'In the Desert of Set' is a treasure: its beginning full of solos, its chorus... What a song! At the end of the first CD, you are already jumping everywhere in your bedroom: this is the ultimate live. You've finally found it.
The second CD starts perfectly [as usual] with 'The Wings of the Hydra'. Then back to the Secret of the Runes album with 'Asgard' and of course the eponymous track. All these songs seriously kick ass, however, the best is still to come. 'Beauty in Black' - an old memory but incredible stuff - 'The Wine of Aluqah'... What do you want?? All is there. While 'The Raven of Dispersion' was written to put the female voices on display, 'To Mega Therion' is definitively made for the stage as the choruses are sung by the audience and Johnsson [in one of his best vocal performances on this album]. The ending part with piano and guitars could just kill you. Finally, 'Cult of the Shadow' is a temple of gold. A unique song. What a gorgeous conclusion for a live album! That's "unfuckin'believable"!!
Some live albums are just released to make money, you know, with an awful recording. Live in Midgard is not one of them. It's even the ideal contrary. This is the sound of perfection. Like Iced Earth's Live in Athens, this live is worth a thousand studio albums. In two words: endless pleasure. Congratulations Therion. I'm giving you the "best live ever" award!
Written on 20.10.2003 by
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