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Pain Of Salvation - The Perfect Element Part 1 CD (album) cover

THE PERFECT ELEMENT PART 1

Pain Of Salvation

 

Progressive Metal

4.26 | 871 ratings

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ProgBagel
Prog Reviewer
5 stars Pain of Salvation - The Perfect Element 5 stars

An opus of progressive music, something that any fan should cherish.

This album is absolutely beautiful, an emotional powerhouse. The Perfect Element is a concept largely about growing up and the things that are experienced like violence, abuse and sex. This is a very dark and moody album, the emotion is perfectly brought out through the instruments as well as the lyrics. Passages and catchy melodies are revisited throughout the album, although they are altered, depending on the placement in the concept where it is conveyed.whether it is an uplifting moment or a deep end of the album that is nearly suicidal. Finally, to end my intro, this album contains two mini epics, 'King of Loss' and 'The Perfect Element' that will hopefully be remembered as the most emotional and progressive songs in the history of music. The Perfect Element tops every aspect that one is looking for in an album whether it would be compositionally, musically, emotionally and lyrically.

The line-up is unchanged from the previous album. Daniel Gildenlow (Guitars, Lead Vocals), Johan Halgren (Guitars, Vocals), Fredrik Hermannson (Keyboards), Kristoffer Gildenlow (Bass, Vocals) and Johan Langell (Drums, Vocals).

The album itself is split into three parts.without even knowing it prior the listener would definitely get the sense that it is certainly split up.

Chapter 1 - 'Used', 'In the Flesh', 'Ashes', 'Morning on Earth'. Right away the album starts off heavy, brought into an almost rap like verse with a trippy background. I was very unsure of what the hell happened, but then I was treated right back into a nice chorus where Daniel shows that he even grew more powerful as a singer. On top of the sweet chorus it gets repeated over and over as a new line is sung over it to end the first song. 'In the Flesh' is even more beautiful. This song is slow.a drastic change in tempo from the first song with very little repetition. More beautiful lyrics are sung as the song goes on and on until it is finally abruptly cutoff.and Daniel finishes his lines. 'Ashes' was kind of strange, had a lot of 'hit' potential. It was a good track, accessible, but very simplistic, I'm not taking anything away with it, I just don't really need to go in depth in describing it. Just like track 2, 'Morning on Earth' takes a break from the previous anger track, a beautiful ballad. The intro is some harmonics on the guitar.it gets brought back.but in an overdriven tone in a later track.

Chapter 2 - 'Idioglossia', 'Her Voices', 'Dedication', 'King of Loss'. 'Idioglossia' starts off chapter two that a tapped intro on the guitar.then the entire band comes in after it is repeated. One of the most powerful intro's I have ever heard on record, pretty intense. The song has a nice structure.it is built up with some fast tempo'd stuff and pretty fancy guitar work. This leads into some smooth emotional breakdowns and the 'Ashes' chorus is repeated a few times throughout the song, a different way every time too. There is also a beautiful guitar solo on here. Pain of Salvation is really starting to show their mastery of conceptual work. 'Her Voices' is one of my favorites. The intro is a piano and vocal ballad most just those two till about two minutes in. Most of this track is non- distorted, until the middle.one of my favorite parts on the album. At first, the track takes a drastic turn.there is nearly an African like vibe with the drums.the guitar and bass mimic some line into each other, followed by Daniel doing some single string picking up and down the fret. Finally it goes into another one but it sounds entirely medieval.like at a damn ye olde fare or something. I feel like Pain of Salvation is just slapping the listeners in the face.showing they can throw this in there and execute it perfectly. It is quickly followed by an operatic backing chant with some violin leads summoned in. this is nirvana. 'Dedication' is the next track, giving us a damn break from all the excitement. It is another one of those piano and vocal ballads. Again with the non-distorted guitars and soft drumming. This piece leads right into the first mini-epic, 'King of Loss'. 'King of Loss' is one of the greatest prog tracks ever written. Why may you ask? There is something out of place on this track, the first 6 minutes are kind of repetitive.until randomly the chorus in progress ends.the song takes a completely different turn, with dueling vocals along with some counter point piano work and this haunting guitar line that repeats and repeats. Eventually the vocal lines fade out and the guitar is accompanied with violins.giving the most beautiful lines ever written. Finally the guitar solo begins.you don't know the meaning of feeling and beauty until you hear this, every note just feels like blood has been shed to make it, absolutely beautiful. The chorus is brought back in.from here on out; the album takes a drastic turn that makes it epic status.

Chapter 3 - 'Reconciliation', 'Song for the Innocent', 'Falling', 'The Perfect Element' These four tracks work together to close the album out the right way. Reconciliation takes the harmonic intro from 'Morning on Earth' and turns it into a regular guitar line accompanied by the rest of the band.very sweet and melodic. The lyrics play an important role of this song. 'Song for the Innocent' has another epic solo in it, mimicking the end of 'Her Voices' just a beautiful rendition of the previous vocal arrangement for that track. 'Falling' is a 1:50 second guitar solo accompanied by a synth chords.sounds like just a chorus sound. It is another wonderful one indeed and it leads right into the epic title track, 'The Perfect Element'. What to say about this one.the band is ready to put their instruments down and goes out with a bang. The intro is an arpeggiated line on the guitar followed by distorted chord version of it with the entire band playing. Daniel uses layered vocals to really get the message out that the character is looking back and concluding his/her thoughts. The chorus is extremely beautiful followed by some really nice rhythm work REALLY TOUGH TIME SIGNATURES AND PATTERNS. The drums in the outro are really intense, with Johann just pounding away on them. Again, I get another African-like vibe.

I doubt anyone read this review all the way through so I will say this. I don't hesitate to call this album perfect, it did everything that was possible to make an album essential. This is an album that truly deserves a 5 star rating. I really cannot chose between this and 'Remedy Lane'.the follow up record. All I can say is this album is more 'epic' while 'Remedy Lane' is possibly one of the most emotional records ever made in music. Anyway, 'The Perfect Element' is an essential album that any human being should own.

ProgBagel | 5/5 |

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