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Pain Of Salvation - One Hour By The Concrete Lake CD (album) cover

ONE HOUR BY THE CONCRETE LAKE

Pain Of Salvation

 

Progressive Metal

3.91 | 485 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
4 stars This is their most "Metal' sounding record. A complex and heavy recording that sounds harsh partly due to the production.The production is fantastic in fact it's crystal clear. It just takes a few spins to get used to it that is all. There are so many time signatures in just about every song. Incredible.This is a concept album that isn't easily explained but the main element is how big industry is destroying our enviroment. Even the album title "One Hour By The Concrete Lake" is a sad commentary of how man poisoned Lake Karachay in the former Soviet Union with nucleur waste and that by just standing beside this lake (that is now covered in concrete) for one hour can be fatal.

Things get started with "Spirit Of The Land" which consists of waves of synths that really do represent the spirit of the land. It blends into the next song "Inside" which was voted the best song on a recent Prog Archives poll (by a landslide). Cymbals and fast paced piano are joined by heavy drums and guitars. Vocals a minute and a half in as a flury of keys come and go.The vocal performance here and throughout this album is astonishing. I like the heavy passage before 5 minutes. "The Big Machine" is slow and heavy (aren't they all ?) It has a gothic feel to it as a dark mood hangs over this song. Great tune ! "New Years Eve" sounds amazing ! The drumming and guitar work are outstanding.There is a pastoral passage 4 1/2 minutes in with piano and vocals followed by some incredible sounding synths. This section is quite powerful in an emotional way. "Handful Of Nothing" has machine gun-like drumming, background synths, some aggressive guitar and then vocals.This song feels cold and lacks any warm or organic sound until the last minute which creates a great contrast. "Water" is probably my favourite song followed by "Inside Out" and "Home". I love the soundscapes to open "Water", they stop as tender passionate vocals come in with some almost soaring guitar melodies.The guitars get aggressive but still tasteful 2 minutes in.The intro soundscape is back. Nice. Spoken words followed by vocals as guitars grind away. Waves of synths arrive with a beautiful melody before the intro soundscape comes back.

"Home" opens with a drum and piano combination. The drumming gets quite crazy at times in this uptempo melody.The guitars and gentle vocals sound great ! There are some blistering guitar solos 4 minutes in and again more terrific guitar a minute later. I really like the mellow passages in this song as well. "Black Hills" is a dark and heavy tune with some creepy vocals.There is some light shining through at times as well. Good guitar later. "Pilgrim" doesn't have a lot going on in it as the vocals are almost spoken, although there is some cello in this one. "Shore Serenity" has a nice beat a minute in and some intricate guitar. There is some heaviness later with keys. "Inside Out" is another fantastic tune ! Maybe the best one. It continues where "Inside" the opening track left off. There is a flury of keys that come and go to open as drums pound away in this uptempo melody. The vocals are great ! So is the guitar solo mid way through and the heavy riffs later. It really is a toss up for me between this track and "Water' but if I had to choose i'd pick "Water".

If your into Prog-Metal you probably already own this, if you don't own this yet do yourself a huge favour and get it !

Mellotron Storm | 4/5 |

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