Rating:
5.9
Tharaphita - Raev/Kui varjud põlevad [Compilation]
2009


Raev ('98 demo)

01. Raev
02. Sündinud tules
03. Merekurat
04. Allpool lund ja jääd
05. Tagasi pimedasse metsa
06. Tumedam kui taevas täis ronki

Kui varjud põlevad ('96 demo)

01. Allpool lund ja jääd
02. Merekurat
03. Tagasi pimedasse metsa
04. Demon's Night


I must say I have mixed feelings about the centennial turnover era Estonian metal scene. On one hand it was an exciting time because there was a strong sense of the scene going somewhere. Also, as a young extreme metal purist I was delighted to see the rise of my style of choice. Likewise I was excited about the influx of all the "stars" of the day - Mayhem, Behemoth and Vader were among the bands to visit this peripheral land.

On the other hand, it was also the time when local metal experienced something I would in retrospect refer to as... septic shock? At one point, perhaps around the mid-aughts, fresh ideas seemed to have ceased and even the better known local acts managed to put out some truly horrible musical abominations (Must Missa's ill-fated "Ma ei talu valgust" definitely qualifies).

Tharaphita managed to keep their banner up through these rough times, but that was mainly because they were flying it half-mast. That is to say, Tharaphita kept up their appearances with a stubborn refusal to change in any single way. Thus their mid-tempo black metal always retained the "good enough" seal of acceptance. The two demos on the compilation at hand showcase the band's early days material and I must say that along with their 2007 "Iidsetel sünkjatel radadel" album, this compilation is my favourite of the group.

This said I'd like to issue a word of warning - while the compilation might be of significant value to Estonian metalheads, others may find it a bit of a struggle. The songs on this album are still a perfect example of the typical Tharaphita sound. To me Tharaphita's songs were always akin to battle hymns - inspiring, maybe, but ultimately there to just keep up the pace as you toddled from one battlefield to another. Sure, they do have some interesting elements here and there, but in the end it sticks to the same hymn-type formula with the ferocious tenacity of a Gregorian chant.

So, unlike the marvellous Forgotten Sunrise compilation of the same series, this "gem from the Estonian metal vault" is strictly for domestic use only. Or you know, for all those who still adhere to the metal faux pas of wearing corpse paint to gigs.


Band profile: Tharaphita
Album: Raev/Kui varjud põlevad


 


written by destroyah | 18.02.2010



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Götter - 19.02.2010 at 04:11  
Every true extreme metal purist, myself included, will be happy to inform you that you have been targeted for termination for rating this compilation with a 5.9. The "Kui Varjud Põlevad" part in particular is the shit in the history of Estonian (extreme) metal.
destroyah - 20.02.2010 at 15:05  
Written by Götter on 19.02.2010 at 04:11

Every true extreme metal purist, myself included, will be happy to inform you that you have been targeted for termination for rating this compilation with a 5.9. The "Kui Varjud Põlevad" part in particular is the shit in the history of Estonian (extreme) metal.



I agree that this rating is perhaps too harsh, but I really am not good with assigning numerical values to albums (and often regret them).

However, I had the international audience in mind when writing this review and I somehow doubt this collection would be of too great of a value to anyone outside the Baltics. As I said, in my mind the two albums in question rank second in Tharaphita's discography. But it does foreshadow a certain decline in quality and a degree of monotony is present on these two albums as well.

These were significant albums, and there's some really good stuff on there, but outside the scene they don't make the cut. For Estonian purists this is a must have, but I can't misguide others to make a purchase based on a misunderstanding of a context.

That Forgotten Sunrise compilation however, was a whole other matter.

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