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Shining - V - Halmstad CD (album) cover

V - HALMSTAD

Shining

 

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.04 | 28 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars "V - Halmstad" is the 5th full-length studio album by Swedish black metal act Shining. The album was released in April 2007 by Osmose Productions. Shining have through their career incorporated more and more progressive/ adventurous elements/ ideas into their sound and "V - Halmstad" is the culmination of that development.

The music on the album is black metal/ extreme metal with nods toward progressive metal. Not progressive metal of the whimsical/ vanilla kind but extreme progressive metal in the vein of acts like Opeth and Enslaved. Shining is like the demented family member that you keep locked up in the basement though. Lead vocalist and band leader Niklas "Kvarforth" Olsson has a sick, filthy and bleak misantrophic view on life, which is expressed through the lyrics on the album. Suicide, depression, self-mutilation, hatred and other sunny subjects are the order of the day. His quite varied vocal delivery suits the music and the lyrics very well. Deep death growls, raw aggressive type vocals, higher pitched black metal rasps ( not as many as on earlier releases), clean vocals and whimpering too ( all styles are fully decipherable). The whimpering is a bit too much to my ears, but I guess it´s a part of the suicide black metal tradition and it only appears a couple of times throughout the playing time, so it´s a minor issue. The lyrics are in the Swedish language and while that might scare off people who don´t understand that language, I think it´s one of the strengths of the album. The lyrics are delivered with scary conviction and when Niklas "Kvarforth" Olsson spits out the words "Jag vill döda dig, Jag ska döda dig Jag måste döda dig" ( this roughly translates into: "I Wish to Kill You, I Will Kill You, I Have to Kill You"), in the song "Längtar Bort Från Mitt Hjärta", I believe every word. I don´t necessarily have to share his bleak view on life to appreciate an extremely convincing delivery.

There are 6 tracks on the 42:33 minutes long album. "Åttiosextusenfyrahundra" is a shorter piano interlude, but the 5 remaining tracks are all pretty long ( all between 6 and 10 minutes long) and display both heavy memorable riffing, haunting guitar lines, melodic soloing, longer acoustic sections and epic elements too. There´s a good balance on the album between the raw and aggressive and the more mellow melancholic/ depressive parts.

The production is very powerful and professional. It was by far the band´s best production up until then.

If you enjoy your extreme metal ( I struggle to really call this black metal) with progressive elements but still with a raw and aggressive edge, "V - Halmstad" is sure to meet your demands. There are a few minor issues that keep me from giving a full 5 star rating but but a 4.5 star rating is fully deserved.

UMUR | 4/5 |

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