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Astrohenge - Astrohenge CD (album) cover

ASTROHENGE

Astrohenge

Experimental/Post Metal


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JJLehto
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars With an album cover like that how could it be bad?

That is exactly why I picked up this album, and my gamble paid off big time. This is an intriguing and very solid debut album. Progressive metal is the only way to describe it. There are a host of various sounds throughout, and there's no real sub genre to identify it with. There are some pretty heavy post rock/metal influences though, as well as traces of thrash. You'll even hear some occasional piano and spaciness!

Variety is the best way to sum up this album. You will hear slow, crushing post metal, light and atmospheric minimalism, thrash, groovy riffs, not to mention a plethora of different song styles. Every song sounds different, and has a different feel to it. It is also an instrumental album and more about about atmosphere then musicianship and skill. There is not much virtuosity on here, but the albums display great musicianship. The songs are well composed and the atmospheres they create are superb.

Mickey Bubbles. Starts out heavy and quick, but quickly moves into a mellow and jazzy section with some piano. Finishes off slow and heavy, which moves into the next song.

Origami Werewolf. Has a sludgy feel to it. Slow and heavy but with lots of frantic, sometimes harsh, sometimes nice, guitar noise throughout.

Toil in Hell. Begins fairly thrashy and with some nice riffing, but comes to an abrupt change. It then carries on with a long, minimal section that slowly builds to a doom metal piece. It ends on a mellow note which segues right into the next song.

Coracle. Starts out very mellow, with simple acoustic picking and a continuous bass drum beat. Soon some spacey synth comes in over it. Very mellow and chill. Then it changes into some slow and heavy, (and catchy) riffing building to a frantic soloing climax with some piano in the background.

The rest you will just have to hear for yourself! The middle songs drag a tad, but the album ends on a strong note with "Piefight", "Bedouin Ramraid" and "Thistle" being the best 3 songs on the album. "Night on Henge Mountain" is an awesome rendition of the classical piece "Night on Bald Mountain". It's a really cool little piece Astrohenge made.

A great album with lots of variety, sounds, superb atmosphere, well composed songs and flow. It does drag a bit at times, but only in some of the post metal sections, (which is after all kind of the intent). Well crafted songs that often just sound downright awesome. Instrumentals are difficult for me, but this album still captivates me. Vocals would be nice though, as the album has a slight...strange feel sometimes. A lack of kick, is the best way to put it and maybe some vocals would have added that. Anyway, this is a great album and not too "out there". I highly recommend it for any prog metal fan, and even many metal fans!

Four Stars

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Posted Friday, October 08, 2010 | Review Permalink

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