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


Pain Of Salvation


Progressive Metal

4.23 | 1151 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars This is the first in a wonderful string of masterful albums by the band. Usually quality this high takes a break, but not for this one, Remedy Lane, and BE. This is where Pain of Salvation truly began to be Pain of Salvation. The music is now their own. No more imitations of other progressive metal bands. In The Perfect Element, Part I, the band writes songs that work on their own, in their groups, and on the whole. This is how a concept album should work. The production is much better here than in their two previous ones. Yes, this here is where they truly stand out as their own band, and no longer can they really be compared to any other band except for bits and pieces and possibilities of inspiration.

The guitar is finally right in the mix. The rhythm pieces carry enough growl to keep the music heavy, but also keep enough flair to have something to say. The solos have never been better. The bass explodes with speed and style consistently, providing the necessary undercarriage for their sound. The drums are incredibly unique, totally unstandard, and refreshingly fun throughout. His cymbal work is fast and complicated. And by this time, the keyboards have found not only their niche but a set of sounds that complement the band and sound pretty awesome in their own right. There are issues with this release, namely a few points of worthless noodling and a few songs that really don't pack as much punch as it seems they should. But considering how significant this is of a Pain of Salvation album, if you like the band at all you should find yourself rather enjoying this one.

And then there's the absolute highlight of this album: Daniel Gildenlow. It's not enough that he writes fantastic lyrics that explode deep and dark subjects with intelligence and empathy. It's not enough that he composes both catchy and creative vocal lines throughout. It's not enough that he creates awkward and delicate harmonies that still confound me as to how they work. Apparently, Daniel decided that it's important to have one of the most dynamic, powerful, and unique voices in the whole genre. His range is just staggering. Wicked screams in Reconciliation and Idioglossia give me chills every time. Roaring, shrieking, rapping, whispering, and so forth all appear at various times in this album. Highlights include the wide range of vocals and vocal talents on the heavy opener Used, the complex proggy metal intro to Idioglossia, the heartbreak of Dedication, the sheer atmosphere of King of Loss, and the percussive finale to the album.

Yeah. It's worth it. Very unique, very different, very weird, but definitely very moving and powerful.

LiquidEternity | 4/5 |


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