Genre: Black/Folk Metal
Usually when I begin a review I try to avoid sounding like a fan-boy. This review is going to be completely fan-boyish. Over the past year I have been listening solely to Equilibriums song "Blut Im Auge", and as I reflect on this gift I received a few years ago for Christmas, I can find nothing bad to say in my heart. Needless to say, this is the most impressive album I have ever heard in my existance.
There is nothing negative about this album. Seriously, I can't even look for negatives because the music is so beautiful.
As far as the compositions are concerned, they are top notch. I find that many folk metal bands tend to put the guitar in the background, almost exclusively as a rhythm and noise source. On this album, this is not the case. Some of the guitar riffs are just incredible, not to mention the solos on many of the songs. The guitar tone is also awsome. For a while on the aforementioned song ("Blut Im Auge") I thought the main riff was just a synth, to my surprise it was the guitar with backing synth. In terms of instruments, they abound on this album. Guitars, drums (with double bass), bass guitar, synths, horns, chiors, flutes, bongos, and so many other bizzar, unknowable instruments create an awsome atmosphere. The soundscape that is developed on this album is one I can only describe as "mystical" and "spiritual." The pagan themes resonate deeply with the listener, and the infuence of natural sounding instruments add heavily to the atmosphere.
Typically, many bands have interludes comparable to classical music. This band takes this a step further to actually sounding like someone just swiped some Amadeus during the interlude "Heiderauche."
To add, this album is entirely in German. But, it does not really matter because the musical qualities are just amazing, not to mention everything is screamed so you don't really realize the lyrics are not in English. In some ways this makes it easier, as an English speaking listener, to get into the music as no matter what the lyrics are saying; it is relatively unimportant when considering the atmosphere of the album. That said, I have seen some lyrical translations which more or less liken these lyrics to pagan and nature inspired lyrics.
While all of these songs are incredible and all need to be heard, I will select a few of my favorites for you to check out: "Blut Im Auge", "Unbesiegt", "Heiderauche", and "Mana."
-Each song is composed excellently
-All the instruments interact with one another amazingly
-The guitars are not dulled down like in most folk metal music, solos and heavy riffs come to the forefront on many occasions
-The songs are very atmospheric. Take "Unbesiegt" for example, the first 2 minutes sound like it was recorded in a rainforest (you must hear this song!).
-"Mana" is an incredible instrumental album closer. At 16+ minutes and many tempo changes, it is just awsome.
-Great recording quality
-Great vocals ranging from a black metal rasp to death metal growls (and in the intro some talking)
Overall Rating: 5/5 stars