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Agalloch - Pale Folklore CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.76 | 165 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
3 stars |C| Fantastic compositional ideas with poor production and mediocre musicianship.

Pale Folklore is the debut album of the post-metal band, Agalloch. The album features simple and gradually moving composition with a creative and haunting atmospheric approach. The band does a great job layering the parts to create some interesting and pleasant musical textures. Black metal is a strong influence; much of the guitar work is synonymous with the black metal style, as well as the guttural vocals. Folk, classical, and "prog" influences are quite prevalent as well. Much of the music overall is incredibly simple, as in even I can play many of the guitar parts by ear, and I'm not exactly anything of a professional guitarist, at best. This is the sort of composition that the novice musician could gain much from practicing. I can't say I'm very impressed with the musicianship overall, which is most evident when there is only one part going, especially the unevenly played pizzicato in the beginning of the album and piano part at the end of the epic. This is by no means a problem for the majority of the album. I was even less impressed with the quite poor mixing and production (and performance) of many of the sections throughout the album. However, the composition itself, and the aesthetic goals of the composition, were very well put together (though occasionally a bit repetitive and dull). I especially appreciate the use of the opera singer on the first track, the chimes, orchestra (even if it was constructed by keyboard timbres ;) sound effects, and other less conventional instruments that were used for the album. Though the guitar work may be simple, it is great nonetheless, from this composer's own point of view. From what I hear, this was an incredibly low budget album, which is no doubt a contributor to the low quality of the production. Had this album been properly mixed and produced to it's full potential, this would be a solid four at least. When I'm getting bored with bombarding my brain with so much wonderfully overcomplicated prog rock and avant-garde, this is a great album to turn to for a refreshing breather. The moment I see a completely remastered version of this album, I'll sell my old copy to a friend for a dollar and get the new one immediately. A great addition to fans of atmospheric post metal.

Isa | 3/5 |


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