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Agalloch - Pale Folklore CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

3.75 | 162 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
4 stars Agalloch's debut album, they have progressed in leaps and bounds from their original, and strong, EP. In "Pale Folklore" Agalloch took their folky black metal style and mingled it with post rock.

The result is an intriguing album, with the atmosphere of black metal (thanks to some buzzy guitars and Haughm's gravely rasps) laid out in post rock fashion, and some folky guitar playing thrown into the mix. The songs are a bit on the lengthy side, atmospheric, and filled with melodic and often beautiful songwriting. Unlike their debut EP which was composed of specific songs, this album is more about overall flow. Of course there are individual songs, each distinct, but it is not so much about song, pause, song, pause, song etc... but listening to the album in one sitting, letting it all flow. The whole is greater than the sum of its parts.

The first song, (really divided into three pieces) is a summary of the whole album really. What Pale Folklore, and really Agalloch, are all about can be seen in this epic, atmospheric, rambling piece.

The album segues, then moves into Hallways of Enchanted Ebony which is a good song, if not a bit rambly.

Dead Winter Days is my favorite on the album, superb song. As Embers Dress the Sky is a redone version of the song found on their EP, much better quality. Another very good song. It moves seamlessly into the finale, The Melancholy Spirit which follows the same general flow of the songs before it, but hey still a damn good song. Nice and lengthy for lots of build and atmosphere, oh and epic guitar riffs and solos! Real post metal style song, with lots of light/dark contrast...just done Agalloch style!

A very good album. A bit rambling, and can be a bit difficult due to its second half being a bit samey. Funny since I like the second half better. Granted I like the opening suite, but the latter half of Pale Folklore really takes off. While this a good album, Agalloch are still searching and building a bit. A must for fans and highly recommended for any prog-metal/regular metal head looking for a unique adventure!

Three and Half Stars


Four Stars

JJLehto | 4/5 |


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