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Rating:
8.5
Spectral Lore - II
2007


01. Introitus
02. The Thorns That Guide My Warpath
03. Towards The Great Crossroad
04. Leaving The Stars Far Behind
05. Recoiling Beneath The Waves
06. Through An Infinite Dreamscape
07. To Wither In Silence And Dismay
08. Where Nature Will Not Ever Yield To Man


Atmospheric black metal / ambient
Greece
Temple Of Torturous

Line-up on the CD:
Ayloss - vocals, all instruments


In 2007 Spectral Lore released II following the underground success of I, which made its debut one year prior. Because both albums were almost overlooked by the entire metal community upon their initial release dates (mostly due to Spectral Lore releasing both independently), Temple Of Torturous decided to take it upon themselves to reissue their own enhanced version of the CDs.

No facetious introduction here - this is a dauntless album, featuring sublime song structures and uncompromising mood swings. Tormenting synth work leaves the listener with the feeling of being haunted, while the acoustic guitar passages make for a very serene experience, as if traversing fogged marshland in the middle of the night, unable to shake the feeling that someone's following you, watching your every move against the pale moonlight from a distance.

Following the folk-inspired acoustic introduction (aptly titled "Introitus") Ayloss unveils his sumptuous skill set with "The Thorns That Guide My Warpath", a 25-minute pilgrimage through arboraceous landscapes, macabre corridors, life's pulchritude, exhilarating celebrations and harrowing resentment, careful not to overlook any significant emotions so as to enrapture the listener and change the setting as the characters of the play develop. The intensity of the melodies that pick up about halfway through the song makes for some incredibly elegant rancor, whereas the final minutes grant the listener time to reflect upon the journey to the backdrop of stirring synthesizers. Normally one avoids resting so much effort into describing one song, but unfortunately for the rest of the songs on the album, they just don't live up to "...Warpath"'s grandeur.

This isn't to say the album is weak - far from it in fact. There is still some excellent synth work, intricate melodies, and the ambient factor plays a major role in the chilling atmosphere. The stifling production reinforces Spectral Lore's abject cynicism, all the while laying the foundation for absolute melancholy. Even still, Ayloss would have been better off reserving the first two tracks for an EP while the succeeding tracks could have rounded out their own full-length, making for a more consistent listening process.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Production: 8


Band profile: Spectral Lore
Album: II


 



Written on 10.08.2010 by
Troy Killjoy
Just another opinionated guy telling you what to listen to.
More reviews by Troy Killjoy ››



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!J.O.O.E.! - 10.08.2010 at 12:35  
Sounds intriguing, and very much my kind of thing. Quite an old album I see, I had a big phase of ambient black metal a few years ago I'm surprised I missed out on this band. Nicely done Sire.
Troy Killjoy - 10.08.2010 at 17:18  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 10.08.2010 at 12:35

Sounds intriguing, and very much my kind of thing. Quite an old album I see, I had a big phase of ambient black metal a few years ago I'm surprised I missed out on this band. Nicely done Sire.

Just listen to the first two songs and you'll know if the rest of the album is worth it.
InnerSelf - 10.08.2010 at 19:45  
I Always enjoy the BM albums you review ... will surely check them out soon and a nice review by the way
Got Mayhem? - 10.08.2010 at 20:01  
Now that's a LOT of adjectives
Daggon - 11.08.2010 at 04:38  
Written by Got Mayhem? on 10.08.2010 at 20:01

Now that's a LOT of adjectives


Yeah haha, that's kinda what I thought in first place. Nice review, I'll surely check this on my weekend, I'll need this kind of music after my Surgery exam, damn I hate Surgery, and surgeons, I hate surgeons... Oh yes, the album, I'll check it ASAP. Thanks, it's good to see this underground things with a review in the main page.
!J.O.O.E.! - 11.08.2010 at 12:24  
Written by Daggon on 11.08.2010 at 04:38

Written by Got Mayhem? on 10.08.2010 at 20:01

Now that's a LOT of adjectives


Yeah haha, that's kinda what I thought in first place. Nice review, I'll surely check this on my weekend, I'll need this kind of music after my Surgery exam, damn I hate Surgery, and surgeons, I hate surgeons... Oh yes, the album, I'll check it ASAP. Thanks, it's good to see this underground things with a review in the main page.

I don't even want to think how they test you on surgery. I'm guessing it involves finding random homeless people and slicing them up?
Daggon - 12.08.2010 at 00:52  
Written by !J.O.O.E.! on 11.08.2010 at 12:24

Written by Daggon on 11.08.2010 at 04:38

Written by Got Mayhem? on 10.08.2010 at 20:01

Now that's a LOT of adjectives


Yeah haha, that's kinda what I thought in first place. Nice review, I'll surely check this on my weekend, I'll need this kind of music after my Surgery exam, damn I hate Surgery, and surgeons, I hate surgeons... Oh yes, the album, I'll check it ASAP. Thanks, it's good to see this underground things with a review in the main page.

I don't even want to think how they test you on surgery. I'm guessing it involves finding random homeless people and slicing them up?


Kind of, instead of random homeless people, now we use any random guy we find in the streets
Merchant of Doom - 12.08.2010 at 18:21  
Some are using random Metal Storm's reviewers...
Merchant of Doom - 12.08.2010 at 18:24  
Ah, good album, BTW...
thehamburglar - 15.08.2010 at 21:36  
Ok at best, nothing more

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