Rating:
9.1
Earth - The Bees Made Honey In The Lion's Skull
February 2008


01. Omens And Portents I: The Driver
02. Rise To Glory
03. Miami Morning Coming Down II (Shine)
04. Engine Of Ruin
05. Omens And Portents II: Carrion Crow
06. Hung From The Moon
07. The Bees Made Honey In The Lion's Skull


Ah, the good old times. When the desert ground still held tons of gold and could be claimed by those that where swift or cunning enough. When America was still the land of the free, unaware of its future reputation. When outlaws would roam through the wild, looking for little towns with banks to rob. When outlaws were outlaws, in the true sense of the word. The strong arm of the law could not get near them, they lived above it. To truly live as a free man. The dream of every little boy.

And now, every one is able to re-live those glorious times! All one needs to is buy himself a copy of Earth's latest opus: "The Bees Made Honey In The Lion's Skull". A description of the music on this album is hardly necessary. The essence of this album is caught in the images it conjures, when it is played at loud volume. All one needs is a tiny bit of fantasy.

If one does not, criticism on this album is easily delivered. When you approach it from a skeptical point of view, this might as well be the biggest hoax in human history. The repetition is endless, the riffs are lame and slow, basically no more than a couple of notes repeated after each other. No vocals, some of the most basic drumming ever, and all of that drenched in a pitiful excuse for a "western feel", created by some lame effects.

Frankly, I can imagine such criticism very well. However: this album works. I really cannot see how anyone with a little bit of fantasy can hate this. "The Bees.." just has this magic touch. I know that in my position as a reviewer I should be able to pinpoint this "magic" in and explain it to the people, but that is just impossible. And even if it would be possible, it would not happen in this review. Not everything needs to be analyzed. Some things just need to be felt.

Performance: 10
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 10
Production: 9


Band profile: Earth
Album: The Bees Made Honey In The Lion's Skull


 



Written on 03.03.2008 by
Lucas
If you're interested in extreme, often emotional and underground music, check out my reviews. I retired from reviewing, but I really used to be into that stuff.
More reviews by Lucas ››



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Lucas - 03.03.2008 at 21:08  
This album is so awesome.
HardSide - 04.03.2008 at 15:01  
Nice review, but doesn't explain what they play, what they sound like. All in all, ill see if i can score a copy and give it a listen.
Baz Anderson - 04.03.2008 at 15:16  
yeh, nicely written but we do want telling what kind of music they actually play inside a review..
it all looks a bit pretentious with the title and everything..
PrettyMao - 04.03.2008 at 15:22  
Written by Baz Anderson on 04.03.2008 at 15:16

it all looks a bit pretentious with the title and everything..


And the review was able to maintain that theme.... Good job!
GT - 04.03.2008 at 16:43  
Nice title and great cover...the review was pretty intriquing as well but as a few others I kinda missed the style..? But since it's from you my guess would be some kind of black...
jupitreas - 04.03.2008 at 16:48  
Earth is of course the quintessential drone band.
I thought everybody knew this?
Promonex - 04.03.2008 at 17:45  
There are people who don't know Earth?
Baz Anderson - 04.03.2008 at 17:50  
there are people that don't care to know Earth judging from what Jerry has said. haha
drone? sounds like the kind of "music" I would not want to be listening to.. I don't even listen to doom or anything around there
Lokomotiv - 04.03.2008 at 18:07  
you snob fuckheads, last time I checked Earth wasn't the most popular band on earth hehe
Omni - 04.03.2008 at 18:54  
I've heard of Earth, just not heard the music before. I may pick a copy of this up though...
Stigma - 04.03.2008 at 18:59  
Uu, interesting.. I'll keep this in mind.
Lucas - 04.03.2008 at 20:09  
Written by HardSide on 04.03.2008 at 15:01

Nice review, but doesn't explain what they play, what they sound like. All in all, ill see if i can score a copy and give it a listen.


You are right I didnt explicitely state it, as i thought it wasn't really necessary. Of course, looking back on it, I could have said at least it was Drone/Doom, but then again, most people who know this band know that already.

As for the lack of a sound description, this can be extracted from it (at least, I think it can):

- repetive music.
- slow riffs
- basically no more than a couple of notes after each other
- instrumental
- basic drumming
- western feel, western effects.

Really, do you need more? I mean, opinions on what a review should offer can of course vary. I personally think it is the task of the reviewer to filter out the bad albums and give a warning for those, and for the good albums, give an idea what they sound like, and try to get the reader enthusiastic. I think I did that, but you're in your full right to disagree.

Written by PrettyMao on 04.03.2008 at 15:22

Written by Baz Anderson on 04.03.2008 at 15:16

it all looks a bit pretentious with the title and everything..


And the review was able to maintain that theme.... Good job!


How is my review pretentious?
Spyroid - 04.03.2008 at 22:44  
Written by Lokomotiv on 04.03.2008 at 18:07

you snob fuckheads, last time I checked Earth wasn't the most popular band on earth hehe


Word!
Lokomotiv - 05.03.2008 at 01:12  
btw, I would like to add that I didn't like the review at all... The whole first paragraph was totally unnecessary and out of context and Nervel actually never says anything about this album. As constructive criticism, don't review anything if you find it "impossible" to explain the album, and I don't really understand why do you say that a description of its sound is hardly necessary. I actually think there is A LOT to write about this enigmatic, hypnotic and highly inspired music.
GT - 05.03.2008 at 09:44  
I've just listened to the album and found it boring as hell, but still pretty good! It sounds self-contradicting and it is, but that's how I feel. It's not something I would listen to daily, but after a hard day if you need to chill out it's perfect. And I've always thought drone was an extreme genre, so that was another surprise. I would give the album a 6,7-7.
Lucas - 05.03.2008 at 20:12  
Written by Lokomotiv on 05.03.2008 at 01:12

btw, I would like to add that I didn't like the review at all... The whole first paragraph was totally unnecessary and out of context and Nervel actually never says anything about this album. As constructive criticism, don't review anything if you find it "impossible" to explain the album, and I don't really understand why do you say that a description of its sound is hardly necessary. I actually think there is A LOT to write about this enigmatic, hypnotic and highly inspired music.


In my opinion, I DID explain what this album sounds like. Read my post, a few ones up. Perhaps those descriptions were not clear enough, as they were a bit 'hidden' in the third paragraph. I thought it would b obvious, but I guess not.

And about the first paragraph, that you call out of context and unnecessary: I'd say 95% of the words in a review are 'unnecessary'. Really, it would save us all a lot of time if we would approach reviews in a different way from now on. Let's just develop some sort of questionnaire:

Speed: around 65.
Genre: black
Feeling: Doomish, blasphemous
Skills: non-existant (adds to atmosphere)
Judgement: buy.

Would you like that? I sure as hell wouldn't. Of course, the first paragraph doesn't say anything about the music, or about the band. But in my opinion, that doesn't make it unnecessary. What I tried to do was to somehow place you back into the america of the old days. To make the listener feel, what I feel when I listen to the music of Earth. That's it, nothing more. I think that such paragraphs (i do it a lot more) add to a review and make it more than just a simple list of plusses and minuses. If it didn't (doesn't) work you that way, well, I'm sorry, but this is my style of writing and I am not going to change it. (don't want to and probably not able to).

Sorry if I sound a bit pissed-off, and don't think I can't stand critism, but I just had a long day. You're welcome to give your thoughts about this post, I'd really like that.
Harlequin - 05.03.2008 at 22:36  
Awesome album.
BitterCOld - 06.03.2008 at 08:15  
i agree with Southern Wind regarding the first paragraph. While most words in a review might be "unnecessary," if they are about the band/album they are at least relevant to the review. The first paragraph was largely political rhetoric that had no bearing on the music what-so-ever.

to make a pun on your name, it really touched a 'nerve' with me.

if you wanted to reference "America in the good old days" you could have simply left it at that, as opposed to commenting on present-day politics, that would have worked... much like a review of Enslaved mentioning their Viking past would have worked, whereas injecting thoughts on Norway's current immigration policy would have zero bearing on one of their albums.

if you'd like to send me a pm to discuss American history and "invasions", i'd be glad to discuss it in that manner.
Lucas - 06.03.2008 at 10:45  
Quote:
quote author=1423 date=2008-03-06 08:15:50]
i agree with Southern Wind regarding the first paragraph. While most words in a review might be "unnecessary," if they are about the band/album they are at least relevant to the review. The first paragraph was largely political rhetoric that had no bearing on the music what-so-ever.

to make a pun on your name, it really touched a 'nerve' with me.

if you wanted to reference "America in the good old days" you could have simply left it at that, as opposed to commenting on present-day politics, that would have worked... much like a review of Enslaved mentioning their Viking past would have worked, whereas injecting thoughts on Norway's current immigration policy would have zero bearing on one of their albums.

if you'd like to send me a pm to discuss American history and "invasions", i'd be glad to discuss it in that manner.


If you feel offended about the "capitalist übercountry.." sentence, i dearly apologize. It was merely meant to illustrate that "the old days are lost and gone forever". Not to judge America for its actions and political moves. I cannot even judge those as I simply lack expertise in that area.

So well, I still think that the first paragraph is not unnecessary, as it adds to the value of the review, and describes the feeling of the album. However, I should stay away from politics, and I'll admit that that sentence was not thought-true enough. I seem to have misjudged the responses it would receive.
Lokomotiv - 07.03.2008 at 04:51  
Written by Lucas on 05.03.2008 at 20:12

Written by Lokomotiv on 05.03.2008 at 01:12

btw, I would like to add that I didn't like the review at all... The whole first paragraph was totally unnecessary and out of context and Nervel actually never says anything about this album. As constructive criticism, don't review anything if you find it "impossible" to explain the album, and I don't really understand why do you say that a description of its sound is hardly necessary. I actually think there is A LOT to write about this enigmatic, hypnotic and highly inspired music.


In my opinion, I DID explain what this album sounds like. Read my post, a few ones up. Perhaps those descriptions were not clear enough, as they were a bit 'hidden' in the third paragraph. I thought it would b obvious, but I guess not.

And about the first paragraph, that you call out of context and unnecessary: I'd say 95% of the words in a review are 'unnecessary'. Really, it would save us all a lot of time if we would approach reviews in a different way from now on. Let's just develop some sort of questionnaire:

Speed: around 65.
Genre: black
Feeling: Doomish, blasphemous
Skills: non-existant (adds to atmosphere)
Judgement: buy.

Would you like that? I sure as hell wouldn't. Of course, the first paragraph doesn't say anything about the music, or about the band. But in my opinion, that doesn't make it unnecessary. What I tried to do was to somehow place you back into the america of the old days. To make the listener feel, what I feel when I listen to the music of Earth. That's it, nothing more. I think that such paragraphs (i do it a lot more) add to a review and make it more than just a simple list of plusses and minuses. If it didn't (doesn't) work you that way, well, I'm sorry, but this is my style of writing and I am not going to change it. (don't want to and probably not able to).

Sorry if I sound a bit pissed-off, and don't think I can't stand critism, but I just had a long day. You're welcome to give your thoughts about this post, I'd really like that.


BitterCold summarized pretty well my thoughts on the first paragraph. I lived myself for pretty long in the USA and I was kind of negatively touched by the political statements, as I found them really cliché and with the "out of place" shit I mean that is I'm all the time reading shit about the USA's government I feeled pissed about reading them even in a review of a band I really admire. About the fact that I didn't technically like the review, it is due to the fact that this is a band in which you can dig very deep. The'yr one of the (if not THE) most highly praised drone band on earth, they have interesting biographical items like the performance of Curt Cobain in the first era, and their sound is truly original and it had evolved a lot. On the other hand, they're highly unknown to the metal audience (and I actually thinh there's nothing of metal in their music), so I don't think it was a good idea to take almost for granted that everyone here know about their sound, and some explanation of the actual music would had been interesting. On the other hand, I totally agree with the rating and with the description of this shit sounding like the soundtrack to a desolate western place. But that's because I'm really familiar with this shit and the only thing for which I read this review with atention was because I wanted to see the point of view of somenoe I consider a respectable straigh-metalhead like you. That is, I hope you take this as constructive criticism.
Lucas - 07.03.2008 at 11:16  
Written by BitterCOld on 06.03.2008 at 08:15


Written by Lokomotiv on 05.03.2008 at 01:12



Quoting both of you.

One good thing about the internet is that published articles can still be edited. Due to the replies of both of you, I decided it would be best to change it. The particular sentence was not thought-through, and although not intented to do offend anyone, it did. So I got rid of it. I do not want to get involved in politics, especially of a country other than my own, so I best stay out of it.

Thank you both for making it clear to me that I should choose my words more carefully next time. Cheers!
Konrad - 16.04.2009 at 05:39  
Great review.
Ag Fox - 18.05.2010 at 07:42  
Never got the review until I actually listened to the album. great review indeed
Slayer666 - 09.01.2011 at 22:49  
Drone isn't really my thing, but this album, and specially the closing track.... wow...
Despite listening, almost exclusively these days, to many atmospheric Black and Doom bands, I have yet to hear a track that takes me someplace else like that one.
I'd just like to thank Lucas for shedding some light on yet another hidden gem that I would otherwise completely miss.
IronAngel - 11.01.2011 at 22:17  
With the new (amazing) album leaked, I should comment here too. It's a good review. A good album review is supposed to be good prose. It's a form of art, not a science. The review describes this album perfectly, and labelling it would be pointless.

How do you label this, anyway? People have claimed it's drone doom, but it really has very little to do with drone. Earth just has that reputation because their first three or four albums (up to Pentastar, maybe) were drone. This is more like doomy ambient or minimalist post-rock. It's not even metal. But it's an awesome album, no less.
!J.O.O.E.! - 12.01.2011 at 16:32  
Written by IronAngel on 11.01.2011 at 22:17

With the new (amazing) album leaked, I should comment here too. It's a good review. A good album review is supposed to be good prose. It's a form of art, not a science. The review describes this album perfectly, and labelling it would be pointless.

How do you label this, anyway? People have claimed it's drone doom, but it really has very little to do with drone. Earth just has that reputation because their first three or four albums (up to Pentastar, maybe) were drone. This is more like doomy ambient or minimalist post-rock. It's not even metal. But it's an awesome album, no less.

I'll def be grabbing the new album if it's leaked. Is it in the same style as this?

I'd say this southern-tinged/perhaps Americana influenced post-rock. It's not drone, whatever people say.
IronAngel - 12.01.2011 at 16:59  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 12.01.2011 at 16:32

Written by IronAngel on 11.01.2011 at 22:17

With the new (amazing) album leaked, I should comment here too. It's a good review. A good album review is supposed to be good prose. It's a form of art, not a science. The review describes this album perfectly, and labelling it would be pointless.

How do you label this, anyway? People have claimed it's drone doom, but it really has very little to do with drone. Earth just has that reputation because their first three or four albums (up to Pentastar, maybe) were drone. This is more like doomy ambient or minimalist post-rock. It's not even metal. But it's an awesome album, no less.

I'll def be grabbing the new album if it's leaked. Is it in the same style as this?

I'd say this southern-tinged/perhaps Americana influenced post-rock. It's not drone, whatever people say.


It's pretty similar, yes (without the Western theme, I guess). I haven't fully grasped it yet, but it's good (not that Earth have ever made anything bad). I'm buying it as soon as it's out, I bet.

Yes, this album definetely has that Ennio Morricone mood. It is somewhere in the area between post-rock and ambient; it doesn't have the dynamics (and bombast) of most post-rock, and it's based more on repetition and sound like ambient. The simple repetition also brings to mind 20th century minimalism, to I think I'll settle with minimalistic ambient post-rock of Morriconish soundscapes. >_< Then again, it does have more structure than most ambient. Not that it really matters, the genres blend into eachother seamlessly at a certain point.
Mr. Doctor - 13.01.2011 at 09:57  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 12.01.2011 at 16:32

I'd say this southern-tinged/perhaps Americana influenced post-rock. It's not drone, whatever people say.


I'll call it Doom Country
tea[m]ster - 16.02.2012 at 00:26  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 13.01.2011 at 09:57

I'll call it Doom Country


Is album more doom or drone? I am not a huge doom fan.
Mr. Doctor - 16.02.2012 at 00:28  
Written by tea[m]ster on 16.02.2012 at 00:26

Written by Mr. Doctor on 13.01.2011 at 09:57

I'll call it Doom Country

Is album more doom or drone? I am not a huge doom fan.


Hehehehe. I like to call it Doom Country not because of the genres really... Just because I think it sounds cool. Like country/Spaghetti Western music going slooooooow.

You should definitely check this album. My favorite Earth album.
tea[m]ster - 16.02.2012 at 00:33  
Written by Mr. Doctor on 16.02.2012 at 00:28

You should definitely check this album. My favorite Earth album.


oh man, just reading the review and hearing your side of it, "country" and "western" and "old USA" , etc, scares me...I'll give it a shot tho, thanks!
Mr. Doctor - 16.02.2012 at 16:55  
Written by tea[m]ster on 16.02.2012 at 00:33
oh man, just reading the review and hearing your side of it, "country" and "western" and "old USA" , etc, scares me...I'll give it a shot tho, thanks!


I don't see how any of those things would be bad This music is the ultimate relax for me not to mention how extremely well composed and executed it is Like Lucas said, just a bit of imagination and boom: sweet time.
Boxcar Willy - 24.07.2012 at 16:50  
Fantastic album.

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