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Ephel Duath - Phormula CD (album) cover

PHORMULA

Ephel Duath

 

Experimental/Post Metal

3.45 | 14 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "Phormula" is the debut full-length studio album by Italian avant garde/ progressive extreme metal act Ephel Duath. The album was released in 2000 by the Code666 label. "Phormula" would be reissued two years later by Earache Records sub-label Elitist as "Rephormula (2002)". The "Rephormula" version includes 2 remixes of songs from the album and 3 songs from the 1998 "Opera" demo.

The music on "Phormula" is rooted in symphonic black metal, but far exceeds the boundaries of that genre. There are some quite unique features that make this album stand out quite a lot from other releases in the genre. First of all the drums are programmed, which honestly took some getting used to for me, but I understand and now appreciate that the electronic element is defining for sound on the album. The vocals vary between harsh black metal rasps and clean vocal parts. Mostly the former vocal style though. The excessive use of keyboards/synths in the music was hard for me to appreciate the first couple of times I listened to the album, but slowly the music has opened up to me and what upon initial listen seemed almost chaotic, has now revealed itself as tightly structured and greatly enjoyable music. The band vary the tempo several times during songs and they go from melodic mid-paced passages to fierce blasting ditto in a split second. There are both classical and folky influences in the music in addition to the harsh black metal attack. Acts like Emperor and Limbonic Art come to mind a couple of times during the albums playing time but add to that an avant garde edge and of course those electronic and brilliantly programmed drums.

The sound quality is excellent if you can appreciate the electronic sound of the drums.

Overall this is a very extreme and quite progressive album that should please the musically adventurous extreme metal fan. Be prepared for challenging chaos though. This is not an easy listening album. The album started out as a 3.5 star album to me but as I have given it more and more spins Ive changed my rating to 4 stars. A very exciting album this one.

UMUR | 4/5 |

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