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Therion Lepaca Kliffoth album cover
3.26 | 69 ratings | 8 reviews | 13% 5 stars

Good, but non-essential

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Studio Album, released in 1995

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. The Wings of the Hydra (3:33)
2. Melez (4:06)
3. Arrival of the Darkest Queen (0:54)
4. The Beauty in Black (3:12)
5. Riders of Theli (2:51)
6. Black (5:02)
7. Darkness Eve (5:19)
8. Sorrows of the Moon (3:26)
9. Let the New Day Begin (3:35)
10. Lepaca Kliffoth (4:26)
11. Evocation of Vovin (4:54)

Total Time 41:18

Bonus tracks on 2004 & 2010 reissues:
12. Enter the Voids (4:11)
13. The Veil of Golden Spheres (2:59)

Line-up / Musicians

- Christofer Johnsson / vocals, guitar, keyboards, producer
- Fredrik Isaksson / bass
- Piotr Wawrzeniuk / drums

- Jan Wichers / vocals (1,8)
- Claudia Maria Mokri / soprano vocals (4,6,11)
- Hans Groning / vocals (4,11)
- Harris Johns / guitar solo (4), mixing

Releases information

Artwork: Kristian Whlin

CD Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 127-2 (1995, Germany)
CD Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 216-2 (2004, Germany) With 2 bonus tracks

LP Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 127-1 (1995, Germany)
LP Nuclear Blast ‎- NB 2596-1 (2010, Germany) With 2 bonus tracks

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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Buy THERION Lepaca Kliffoth Music

THERION Lepaca Kliffoth ratings distribution

(69 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(13%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(29%)
Good, but non-essential (41%)
Collectors/fans only (14%)
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)

THERION Lepaca Kliffoth reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by b_olariu
4 stars The first true metal with symphonic elements added , and the first more divirsificate, not only growling and same riffs.The music is much more melodic, with more keyboards and even orchestra . So a great album, and i suggest to start with this one if you don't know the band, because, from Lepaca Therion develop their own style, and soon become one of the front bands in metal with symphonis passages. The best track are:Melez,The Beauty in Black ,Lepaca Kliffoth and Evocation of vovin. All in all listen to this album worth it 4 stars, recommended if you are on the metal side.
Review by Finnforest
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars Yeeaaaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I was very impressed with my first Therion album "Deggial" and decided I would check out some of the band's early history. I took a shot in the dark and grabbed Lepaca Klifforth. While it is a clear step (or couple steps) down from Deggial in terms of sophisticated prog-metal it was still pretty enjoyable. The differences are many. Rather than the gorgeous flowing operatic vocals of Deggial here you have the gravel throat of Chris Johnsson doing some pretty extreme singing, though not growling. The pace of the songs is much faster with traditional speed-chugging guitar and galloping rhythms. You can begin to see the first signs of the band transforming itself with the occasional operatic backing vocal or classical sounding keyboard part here and there but they sound rather tentative and the production qualities are significantly lower. The performances of the musicians however are still very solid. "The Beauty in Black" is an excellent track with a classy piano/flute intro leading to some strange sounding chords. When the band comes in they are joined by male and female operatic vocals, not as smooth as later work but hinting at the direction. Then there are whispered vocals over those strange, watery strummed chords. Pretty neat track but on the short side unfortunately. The title track is a standout too with some great occult chanting. So there are some classed up moments but most of this album is still good gut-punch stuff. Frankly this short, raging record is more exciting heavy metal than anything I've heard from Sabbath or Metallica since Mob Rules/Justice respectively. If you like the thought of Therion but on the rougher side, don't hesitate! And with the inside leaf proclaiming the various names of the Anti-Christ (I didn't realize there were so many!), Lepaca Klifforth is sure to be WAY more fun than your Tangent album. Put this CD on your shelf and watch it strangle your Morse albums and drag them to the fires to be consumed by Asmodeus.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars The end of the beginning

Therion's journey from being a standard death metal band to finding their own niche in the field of operatic/symphonic metal was a gradual one. The first two albums had shown only the barest of hints hidden away behind the endless growls, and the eclectic "Ho Drakon ho megas" saw band leader Christofer Johnsson exploring a number of styles while still relying mainly on the sounds which he had shown a preference for up to that point. "Lepaca kliffoth" is the next stepping stone on the way, and while there are some significant changes to report, this really represents the last of the old more than the start of the new.

This would be the band's first release for Nuclear Blast Records, whom they have remained with to date. In terms of line up, once again leader Johnsson makes wholesale changes, with only drummer Piotr Wawrzeniuk remaining on drums.

Christofer Johnsson's ongoing interest in the Dragon Rouge cult is once again the source of inspiration for much of the lyrics, and "Vovin" makes a first appearance when he is the subject of an "evocation" towards the end of the album. "Theli" also gets a first name check in a Hawkwind like romp through"Riders of Theli".

In terms of notable significant progress, Johnsson finally dispenses with the growling,and makes a conscious attempt to sing melodically. He also brings in classically trained singers on three songs. Being candid, Johnson's singing is not that wonderful, being more of a shouting indulgence. The instrumentation is however noticeably more adventurous, with keyboards becoming ever more significant. The lead guitar too is more focused on playing rather than simply thrashing out riffs.

The segued tracks "Arrival of the Darkest Queen" and "The Beauty in Black" (the latter released as the band's first single) finally offer the first genuine taste of what was to come from Therion. A wonderful instrumental piece, quite unlike anything we have heard before from the band, precedes a magical piece of operatic singing. Male and female vocals combine against a heavy backdrop in a song which suffers only from its brevity.

Elsewhere, "Darkness eve" is for the most part a song with little to distinguish it. For the final minute though it bursts into an exquisite instrumental passage. The following "Sorrows of the Moon" is a cover of a song by Celtic Frost, a principal influence of Johnsson's during Therion's early years. While not actually growled, the spoke vocals here are only for the converted. The title track brings a new level of heaviness, with a hypnotic chant sitting on top of a dark instrumental. The album closes with "Evocation of Vovin", the second song to offer a firm indication of the direction the band would follow hereafter. The quasi-symphonic instrumentation is much lighter and more melodic than on the rest of the album, with some fine lead guitar thrown in too. Vocally, Johnsson is still shouting rather than singing, but the brief return of the operatic singers offers some compensation.

In all, an album which is essential for those with an interest in discovering how Therion re- invented themselves. The album itself is an enjoyable listen overall, but it is its place in the evolution of Therion which is the most important thing here.

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
3 stars The first half of the 90's saw the rise of doom-death. A style of slow-paced doom metal with gruff vocals that combined the power chords of Black Sabbath, the slow dirge and nihilism of the industrial new wave band Swans and the zombie type of vocals that you used to scare your little sister with.

Now, all of that would have been of little relevance to this site if it hadn't been for the fact that most of the UK pioneers of this style gradually morphed into more accessible formats. My Dying Bride stayed most true to the original format but they matured into epic metal compositions that many Opeth fans will probably like. Paradise Lost did an interesting excursion into Sisters and Depeche Mode territories and you all know what wonderful music Anathema went on to create right?

But also Sweden (of course) had its exponents. Tiamat doesn't feature on this site but before they turned into a stale gothic metal act they created some interesting Sisters of Mercy on Pink Floyd dope albums. And Therion, well they believed the true potential of Jesus Christ Superstar hadn't been explored yet and brought back opera to rock.

The reason I try to impress you with all this background is because I have very little to say about this particular album itself. It is decent, but it is the sound of a death metal band that realized they weren't heavy nor skilled enough to hold their ground in this normally very technical scene. So they compensated their disadvantage by experimenting, by finding creative solutions and by trying out new things on the unsuspecting audiences. An approach that often leads to great things.

And so it did for Therion. This transitional album is mostly straightforward 'doom death & roll' with occasional experiments with choirs and violins. Their next album would reveal all the potential of this fertile marriage. Lepaca Kliffoth will probably only appeal to you if you want to seek out where Therion came from and if you can stomach the gruff vocals. I've found myself quite liking it, but never enough to motivate me to explore the Therion history any further back then this one.

Review by Warthur
3 stars With vocals more diverse than the grunts and growls that came before, musical influences ranging from the electronic end of progressive rock to the most aggressive thrash metal, and much less death metal than previous releases, except for fleeting glimpses of the death and roll style of bands like Entombed, Lepaca Kliffoth finds Therion in the midst of a transition from the symphonic death metal mayhem of the preceding album to the more esoteric prog-goth direction they would take in the post-Theli era. It's their first album to fully emerge from the shadow of their death metal roots, but simultaneously feels a little tame and aimless as a result. Still, it paved the way to the career highlight of Theli, and as a result if you are keen on Therion it's worth listening to at least once, even if it doesn't hit the top tier of their back catalogue.
Review by siLLy puPPy
3 stars Although LEPACA KLIFFOTH is often deemed the transition album in THERION's sound to the fully formed progressive symphonic metal on "Theli" that launched them into the world's attention, THERION actually always took a more experimental approach even at their very beginning. While their early albums were clearly rooted in death metal with a hardcore punk attitude, they were still using occasional clean vocals and keyboards albeit more for embellishments than as a major component in the aggressiveness. Another step in their sound came on "Symphony Masses" which added elements of jazz, industrial, chants and more traditional sounds of metal. LEPACA KLIFFOTH (referring to the Qliphoth, the representation of evil forces in Jewish mysticism) simply changes the balance of the elements hitherto presented and adds some new twists and turns to advance their evolution into the symphonic metal of "Theli" and beyond.

While this album begins as rather straight death 'n' roll with occasional symphonic embellishments, by the time we get to the third track, the short and sweet "Arrival Of The Darkest Queen" we get a fully fledged folky symphonic sound that ushers in the band's first ever single "The Beauty In Black" which began their experiments with a sound more reminiscent of "Theli" with the emphasis on the symphonic elements that includes a female soprano, a male baritone and also on the melodic development rather than the aggressive chugga chug of the guitar riffage, so i would say this song is the true final metamorphosis of their sound. However, the next track gets cold feet and retreats back to a more death metal rooted sound. Thus the very nature of this one step ahead and two steps back approach on LEPACA KLIFFOTH is what makes this seem like a very scattered and uneven album.

Despite the dominance of the death metal sound, other influences find their way into the mix including Persian ethnic music, a much wider vocal approach as well as keyboards becoming more prominent. Some tracks like "Black" actually tie the past to the future with a beauty-and-the-beast approach that mixes death metal vocals with the female soprano. It also includes a Celtic Frost cover "Sorrows Of The Moon." I find the most interesting tracks to be the last two. The title track has a melancholic guitar intro that builds up into a heavy rocker that incorporates some of the strangest vocals on the album. The progressiveness also displays interesting technical drumming patterns with highly melodic guitar riffs. The tempo varies substantially and time sig changes are abundant and i love the metal chants of the ending. "Evocation Of Vovin" is an energetic little symphonic keyboard number that is probably the most "Theli-like" track on the album. This is an all-over-the-place album which as a cohesive album is pretty weak, but there are plenty of excellent individual tracks on here making it a worthy listen.

Latest members reviews

2 stars This is the first Therion album with no death metal vocals. Christofer Johnsson sings in a hardcore style, and two opera singers were hired to do some vocals on three songs. The music is much more melodic, with more keyboards and even orchestra samples. "The Wings Of The Hydra", "Riders Of Thel ... (read more)

Report this review (#66695) | Posted by zaxx | Wednesday, January 25, 2006 | Review Permanlink

5 stars it's first album of therion music i have heard first time. it was wonderfull. pure extasy. i hope the other people feel as greate as me when i'm listening this MUSIC. they're the best ever. i can't find more words to describe this incredible kind of music. fallow this way i'll stay with you. ... (read more)

Report this review (#31012) | Posted by | Tuesday, January 18, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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