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PAN.THY.MONIUM

Experimental/Post Metal • Sweden


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Pan.Thy.Monium biography
Formed in Finspång, Sweden in 1990 - Disbanded in 1996

One of many bands headed by prominent Swedish prog-metal figure Dan Swanö, Pan.Thy.Monium stands out as one of his more unusual musical projects. Essentially a progressive death metal band, PTM's three albums supposedly tell the story of Raagoonshinnaah (the god of darkness) and his battle with Amaraah (the god of light), but the vocals (provided by Robert Karlsson, Swanö's future replacement in Edge of Sanity) are totally indecipherable and generally considered to be nothing more than random death metal growling. The group's music is highly unusual, encorporating confusingly dense structures and instruments like keyboards and even saxophones into their experimental death metal style. At the time of their debut album in 1992 their identities were unknown, going instead under aliases. The project was ended by Swanö in 1996, though there has been some degree of interest from the other members in resuming it without him.

See also:
- Another Life
- Dan Swäno
- Edge of Sanity
- Godsend
- Karaboudjan
- Nightingale
- Odyssey
- Route Nine
- Unicorn

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Pan.Thy.Monium: Dawn of Dreams [CD]Pan.Thy.Monium: Dawn of Dreams [CD]
Mystic Production
$11.70
$14.57 (used)
Dawn of Dreams/KhaooohsDawn of Dreams/Khaooohs
TDNE 2011
$13.98 (used)
Dawn of Dream / KhaooohsDawn of Dream / Khaooohs
Reissued
Osmose Productions 2001
$169.68
KhaoohsKhaoohs
$42.29 (used)
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PAN.THY.MONIUM discography


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PAN.THY.MONIUM top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.91 | 32 ratings
Dawn Of Dreams
1992
4.13 | 41 ratings
Khaooohs
1993
4.39 | 59 ratings
Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion
1996

PAN.THY.MONIUM Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

PAN.THY.MONIUM Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

PAN.THY.MONIUM Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.80 | 5 ratings
Dawn of Dreams & Khaooohs
2001

PAN.THY.MONIUM Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

3.03 | 6 ratings
...Dawn
1990
3.06 | 8 ratings
Dream II
1991

PAN.THY.MONIUM Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Studio Album, 1996
4.39 | 59 ratings

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Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars PAN.THY.MONIUM, the side project of Swedish extreme metal veteran Dan Swanö cranked out the debut EP and first two albums out fairly quickly in the early 90s but as Edge Of Sanity became more popular in the blossoming extreme metal underground, Swanö focused most of energy in that direction as well as divvying up his energies into other bands like Godsend, Nightingale, Maceration, Overflash, Subway Mirror and even a neo-prog project called Unicorn. The man was obsessed and Sweden's answer to Mike Patton's restless pursuit of the next project. Despite his full plate, he found time in his busy schedule to release the last chapter of the PAN.THY.MONIUM trilogy which ended in 1996 with KHAOOOHS AND KON-FUS-ION.

For this last installment in the PAN.THY.MONIUM multiverse, the band (same lineup on all four releases: Robert Karlsson "Derelict" (vocals), Dag Swanö "Aag" (lead guitars, soprano saxophone, "noises,") Robert Ivarsson "Mourning" (rhythm guitars), Dan Swanö "Day Disyraah" (basses, keyboards), Benny Larsson "Winter" (drums, cymbals, percussion)) continues their unique avant-garde take on the possibilities of marrying progressive rock with death doom metal and implement both aspects of the earlier albums into their grande finale. While the debut "Dawn Of Dreams" focused more on the progressive touches in a death doom context, the sophomore followup "Khaooohs" experimented more with textures, tones, timbres and sound effects.

KHAOOOHS AND KON-FUS-ION only contains four tracks however the closing "In Rememberence" is nothing more than one minute of silence whereas the penultimate "Behrial" eschews the metal paradigm altogether and creates a swirling synthesized symphony of some sort of darkwave chamber rock that lasts nearly seven minutes which leaves only two tracks of recognizable music that represent the true frenetic and fertile ground of the PAN.THY.MONIUM sound established on the previous recordings which continue the process of taking the listener to an entirely bizarre parallel universe where none of the established rules apply. Although there are only two "real" tracks, they are both quite lengthy and clock in at over 30 minutes.

"The Battle Of Geeheeb" begins with doom metal riffing and bluesy guitar licks before the chugging and death growls regurgitate from the underworld with the eerie atmosphere oozing out and the percussive drive outlining the main frame of the musical drive. The track displays not only the rotisserie of stylistic changes with electronic effects and psychedelic segments but also deliveries plenty of progressively infused angularities with time signature rich freneticism between the chugging riffs and just plain weird moments when everything stops and a lone saxophone squawks up a storm. The whole thing does evoke a battle where the guttural death growls are directing and orchestrating the army of sound to attack some unknown enemy.

"Thee-Pherenth" becomes even more unstable with doom riffs, down-tuned acoustic guitar arpeggios and a more dirge-like snail paced tempo but doesn't waste much time jumping into jazzy metal territory with a bizarre dance of time signature rich jitteriness that grows in intensity. The KHAOOOS part of the equation is balanced out by melodic guitar licks and subtle keyboard backdrops to keep some sort of anchoring process to the unhinged metallic fury. KON-FUS-ION lurks around every corner as the heavy metal bombast can switch to a segment of weird sound effects or psychedelic meanderings but bounces back with bluesy metal shuffles. While a "constant menu of variations" is the de facto motto of PAN.THY.MONIUM, this track seems to dish out more than the usual portions and all the better for it.

While Swanö saved his best avant-garde beasts for last, the problem with this album is that it only contains two lengthy gems and two tracks that are really unnecessary. For greater effect, the synthesizer rich "Behrial" which is more or less a mood enhancer should have been inserted between the two real stars of the show and then shortened by about half. The last track which is a minute of silence should've just been removed or some sort of weird frenetic finale that went out in a bang. Of course, the band could not predict the illogical nature of this once translated into the modern era of ripping CDs onto hard drives but still, it seems like a wasted opportunity. Unfortunately only two of the tracks are of masterpiece status and the other two are filler. A great conclusion to one of extreme metal's most interesting bands but a bad ending for what started out as one of the band's best albums. Still worth the price of admission for the first two tracks.

 Khaooohs by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.13 | 41 ratings

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Khaooohs
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars Dan Swanö's side project PAN.THY.MONIUM may have started out as a way to unleash his avant-garde tendencies that wouldn't jive well in Edge Of Sanity but the whole thing wasn't really meant to be something that had a long shelf life and despite the band only releasing one EP and three albums in the 90s, the band sure knew how to let each album speak for itself and create a completely new sound on each. All three albums (and EP) had the same lineup which allowed the band to mature as a cohesive unit and mature they did as the second album KHAOOOHS takes things several notches higher than the debut "Dawn Of Dreams," well, at least in terms of weirdness.

The band continued to use aliases despite having revealed their identity, but let's face it. Äag aka Tom Nouga is a lot freakier than Dan Swanö (bass, keyboards, effects), Day DiSyraah the same for Dag Swanö (Dan's elder bro, lead guitarist, organist and baritone saxophone player), Mourning for Robert Ivarsson (rhythm guitarist), Winter for Benny Larsson (drummer and violinist) and Derelict for Robert Karlsson (vocals). The gang is back for round number two and takes things to a new level and succeeds in keeping the staples of their overall sound intact without repeating what came before.

First of all, there is no 21 minute behemoth track that swallows up half the album. Instead there are 11 tracks that range from 50 seconds to over 8 minutes, however the intro "I Manes Seen Dog En Skugga," I Vindens Vald," "Ekkoeece" and "Khaooohs II" are merely sound effect collages to augment the weirdness factor without much musical value. The rest of the album is very much in the death metal camp but pretty much refrains from the dirge-like doominess of "Dawn Of Dreams." The riffs exist in a much more quickened tempo with only a few slow downs into doom territory, however the compositions are a lot more avant-garde and hop, skip and jump all over the place.

What's the same: death doom riffing with the same grungy tones and stompitude although the tempos are more adrenalized this time around. The death growls are ubiquitous and still quite unintelligible. The bass slinks and slithers all around but generally follows the melodic drive. The keyboard provide the adequate atmospheric touches to keep things murky and drenched in melancholy. What's different: the composiitons are all over the place. There is less emphasis on making this scary and more focus on just making everything fun. There are bluesy rock shuffles in death metal tones, more electronic effects and overall instrumental tradeoffs that sound more like electronica than metal. Dan Swanö clearly had been sampling many styles of music to create this. Even some of the guitar solos are more like bluegrass than metal. The Mr. Bungle of death metal?

The band had moved far from typical old school death metal of the day. This album is more like a collection of bizarre amalgamations of musical genres that only uses death metal as the external packaging. The compositions themselves are quite avant-garde and have no connection to bands like Morbid Angel for example. While the music is much more experimental, there are also some things i don't like about this album. Firstly, the guitars tend to repeat the same chugga chug more often than not and the drumming is a bit lazy as there are no blastbeats. In that way, it's more like a sludge metal release but the vocal guttural growls are clearly deathened to the max. So, KHAOOOHS is an incredibly unique and creative album although it isn't what i would call perfect.

While i love most of what is on display, there are still a few factors that i always wish they would do differently but in the end this sophomore release is an excellent followup to the already experimental debut "Dawn Of Dreams." KHAOOOHS emphasizes melody above all else and the ear worm hooks are quite strong on this on although the band try to obfuscate them under the bantering din and extreme avant-garde freakery, however the bluesy guitar solos and melodic hooks are the underpinning to the whole shebang even as the weird off-kilter shenanigans proceed without restraint. It seems to me that this album eschews the progressive time signature freak outs in exchange for bizarre dynamics shifting into strange new concoctions however in the end this album is much weirder with jazzy touches interpolated in the nooks and crannies as well as post-punk industrial sensibilities lurking in every corner. Brilliant i do say.

 Dawn Of Dreams by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Studio Album, 1992
3.91 | 32 ratings

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Dawn Of Dreams
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars PAN.THY.MONIUM was one of the earliest projects of Dan Swanö, who has become one of Sweden's most prolific veterans of extreme metal and this band served as a side project apart from his regular death metal gig in Edge Of Sanity with PAN.THY.MONIUM allowing a more experimental and avant-garde approach by taking death doom metal into more progressive arenas. The band started out anonymously with Dan's older brother Dag Swanö along with drummer Benny Larsson from Edge Of Sanity with Robert Ivarsson (rhythm guitars) and vocalist Robert Karlsson completing the lineup. The band members all had pseudonyms and remained mysterious with untitled tracks that began on the 1990 demo "Dawn" and the debut EP "Dream II." With the release of the first full-length album DAWN OF DREAMS in 1992, the band had finally revealed their identities but still opted for untitled tracks however they all have since been renamed on later reissues.

While Edge Of Sanity was just joining the early old school death metal club, PAN.THY.MONIUM was an altogether different beast despite being grounded in the same death metal scene at its core. This band cranked out heavy doom inspired death riffs with unintelligible guttural growls but also had a murky atmospheric dread that sculpted the bombast into something even more menacing and with the addition of the supplemental sounds a saxophone and violin, the project took extreme metal into completely unexplored realms. The compositions took great liberty in expanding the death metal paradigm as well with Dag Swanö's lead guitar antics taking many shapes including traditional bluesy shuffles, thrash metal palm muting punchiness and just plain weird experimental touches. Since the song titles were non-existent and lyrics indecipherable, the album relied on atmospheric interpretations and the vocals used were just another instrument.

The opening track which takes up nearly half the album is a monstrous progressive behemoth. It begins with a ticking of a clock and a saxophone sequence which makes you think this is a John Zorn album or some other avant-garde jazz artist but once the doom metal riffs start chugging away and the death growls howl into the night, it's time for good old fashioned Swedish death doom metal. The track starts off sounding like generic old school death metal but the frenzy of progressive time signature outbursts soon find more confidence to express themselves and the track begins to meander all over the place. The heavy metal bombast is pacified by the atmospheric keyboards which sometimes sound a little cheesy but are quite effective in elevating the overall mood setting into a bizarre hybrid of space rock and extreme metal. Touches of jazz are inserted when least expected and despite the dominance of the metal aspects finds ways to shift the focus including eerie psychedelic spoken word segments. Sounds like Swedish so i guess there are some meaningful narrations.

After the near 22 minute opener, the following six tracks may be shorter with the longest just shy of the six minute mark but in aggregate pull off the same varying instrumental gymnastics as the first track with the heavy metal guitar riffing alternating between dirge-like doom and the more upbeat death metal freneticism. In some cases there is more attention given to catchy melodic keyboard rolls that are implemented in an extremely spooky and alienating manner. While the remaining tracks pretty much finds new variations on the similar themes, the last one is perhaps the weirdest and most daring as it implements all the different sounds the album had to offer in concentrate. It begins with a heavy percussive stomp and almost whispered death growls but really pulls out the avant-garde punches with a series of sax squawks, post-punk bass attacks and sound effects taken to the max.

PAN.THY.MONIUM was and remains one of the most unique sounding extreme metal bands even within the prolific lengthy list of projects that Dan Swanö has involved himself in throughout the last few decades. This band not only expanded the boundaries of the nascent paradigm that was gestating into both the death and doom metal worlds of the old school era but also borrowed liberally from 70s progressive rock as well as the most experimental edges of post-punk and electronica. Add the John Zorn sax squawks and you have the perfect recipe for something completely out of the box. The band put out three full-length albums which incrementally ratcheted up the progressive and experimental features laid down on DAWN OF DREAMS. While the band's signature sound reached its apex on 1996's "Khaooos And Kon-Fus-Ion," the startling hybridization of sounds had already gestated into its full Frankenstein form on this debut. This is a highly entertaining and satisfying slice of adventurous experimental metal not to be missed by those who crave such things.

Renamed titles:

Untitled 1 = Raagoonshinnaah (21:49)

Untitled 2 = Eepitaffph (5:51)

Untitled 3 = Sieegeh (4:03)

Untitled 4 = IV (3:06)

Untitled 5 = Zenotaffph (2:42)

Untitled 6 = Amaaraah (4:26)

Untitled 7 = Ekkoecce (3:00)

 Dream II  by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1991
3.06 | 8 ratings

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Dream II
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

4 stars DREAM II is a short EP and the first official release of PAN.THY.MONIUM led by Dan Swanö better known for his involvement in Edge Of Sanity. This short EP of four track debuts much of the stylistic approach that the band would further develop on the three full- length albums that followed.

The band was formed by Dan Swanö (aka Day DiSyraah on bass, keyboards, effects) and his brother Dag Swanö (aka Äag aka Tom Nouga on lead guitar, organ and baritone sax) along with Edge Of Sanity member Benny Larsson (aka Winter on drums) and lead vocalist Robert Karlsson aka Derelict and Robert Ivarsson aka Mourning on rhythm guitar.

The band already showed promise on the demo "?Dawn" and really start to evolve their progressively tinged death doom metal sound on DREAM II. Many of the riffs and ideas on this EP were recycled and appear liberally on the debut album DAWN OF DREAMS which is obvious by the ticking clock effect that begins both this EP and the first album

DREAM II displays the signature sound that would carry the band all throughout their brief 90s existence. PAN.THY.MONIUM was totally an anonymous band at this point and no one had any idea that Dan Swanö was the mastermind behind the project when this came out. All four tracks are also untitled which made this band a bizarre mysterious addition to the expanding extreme metal world of the early 90s.

Graced by heavily distorted death doom metal riffs and indecipherable gutturally growled vocals, the tempos are faster than the dirge-like contemporaries and also implements spooky spectral atmospheres through the stellar work of the keyboards. While the death doom aspects are dominant, there are also thrashy chugging riffage as well as progressive outbursts of time signature rich angularities.

It's not too difficult to understand how albums like "Crimson" evolved as Edge Of Sanity's magnum opus when listening to PAN.THY.MONIUM. Even at this early stage a young Swanö was already heavily influenced by not only the most extreme aspects of the metal universe but equally at home with the progressive rock influences of the 70s.

This album displays all the metal madness accompanied by the avant-garde extras which include call and response monster vocalizations, ethereal electronic intermissions, various guitar riffing styles, keyboard attacks more at home on an Emerson, Lake and Palmer album and outstanding compositional fortitude. This band was light years ahead of the pack in terms of complexity. Whereas most doom based metal plodded along, PAN.THY.MONIUM was very much about variations. A spectacular and brilliant first offering.

 ...Dawn by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1990
3.03 | 6 ratings

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...Dawn
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by siLLy puPPy
Collaborator PSIKE, JR/F/Canterbury & Eclectic Teams

3 stars Out of the many projects that extreme metal veteran Dan Swan' has been involved with over the years, perhaps PAN.THY.MONIUM which was created mysteriously and anonymously was one of the most experimental and fascinating. The project was formed with his elder brother Dag Swan' and Edge Of Sanity member Benny Larson (drums, violin) and some other friends. They all went by pseudonyms in the beginning. Dan Swan' was only 17.

Dan started this project at the age of 17 with some friends and released this demo DAWN which was never released to the public but ultimately blossomed into a veritable side project. While just a virtually rough draft, DAWN created the basic death doom metal sound that would remain the core sound of PAN.THY.MONIUM as the band became more progressive. On this demo however, it's pretty much straight forward death doom metal which was in its infancy but even at this point Swan' was adding experimental touches most prominent in the eerie atmospheric keyboards.

For a demo this is pretty good even if a tad generic but the production and mixing is above average for a homegrown project of the era and the crushing riffs and hellfire death growls are in perfect form. The atmospheric accoutrements work quite well as they don't diminish from the brutal heaviness and instead supplement a mood setting dread. One of the few early death doom metal bands to venture into more experimental realms and what a great start right here.

Although this demo was never officially released in its own right, it is available on a physical format on the 2010 vinyl ''.Dawn + Dream II' on The Crypt label and again in 2015 on Dark Symphonies on both vinyl and CD. The band would follow up with an EP and three full length albums. One of the most interesting extreme progressive metal bands of the 90s.

 Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Studio Album, 1996
4.39 | 59 ratings

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Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Warthur
Prog Reviewer

4 stars The bizarre close to Pan.Thy.Monium's concept album trilogy finds the Edge of Sanity side project going out on a high. The running time here is pretty brief, with only the first two tracks really offering the sort of full bore avant-death metal the group is known for and the last two providing an ambient coda to the sequence, so perhaps they realised that their weird house style was running out of steam, but what a high to go out on, rampaging though a Mr Bungle- esque calvacade of musical styles with sometimes only the "burping frog" vocals to retain the death metal connection.
 Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Studio Album, 1996
4.39 | 59 ratings

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Khaooohs & Kon-Fus-Ion
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Sagichim
Special Collaborator Eclectic Prog Team

5 stars Pan.Thy.Monium's third and final album is excellent to say the least, and it assures the band is one of the best forces in their genre and are unable of producing something less than amazing. This album concludes a trilogy of concept albums all combined together with some kind of story about a battle between the gods. Never had the interest of searching the lyrics to those albums actually. One element that sticks with the band throughout their albums is the clock motif, every album contains several times, clocks ticking, interesting, and i wish i knew how is it connected to their overall story. This time the band is going back to producing long prog epics instead of shorter songs, the album has 4 songs but it is actually 2 epic songs, one ambient track and another one minute silence track, so what we are left here with, is about 27 minutes of the band actual style of music, which today hardly qualifies as an EP. The band's style continues in the same line of the previous two albums, extreme death metal with avant tendencies and of course some jazz.. The sound on this album is a beast, it has a bigger impressive sound than before, everything is huge from the drums sound, guitars and the bass too.

What i like best about this group is the fact that they are so progressive!! Nothing is conventional, the music is moving forward and evolving from one minute to the next each time to a different direction, no way of knowing what's on their mind next. The quality of the music is very high, the writing is exceptional and even more progressive than before. Songs are complex and intricate. Clearly the band have come a long way since their first EP was released in 1990, each release saw the band getting more and more progressive, till now you can hardly see them as the same band they were only six years before, ordinary death metal songs turned to metal songs with prog influences, that in the next album was reduced to riffs inside a prog song, and now are gone completely leaving us with a pure 100% progressive extreme metal.

The music as before is a wild mix between the extreme metal, jazz and avant-garde, it's not too freaky, the avant parts are all combined inside the music and that's what makes it so progressive. The riffs are outstanding and powerful ranging from slow doomy stuff to fast intricate guitars, solos are just right, the playing is excellent. Bass by Dan Swano has a groovy sound, he likes to use chorus effect on his guitar as he did before, which gives the music a more melodic touch, he goes along with the music and have some really good ideas. After the bomb unleashed on our ears is over, "Behrial" an ambient track comes to ease are minds, beautiful track, done only with keys and some drums, which i feel, have a reason for it's being there, ending this trilogy. Overall the band is as tight as ever and it is always a pleasure listening to those great musicians. Too bad this one is their last album and we haven't heard anything from them for the past 16 years, this is one of the few comebacks i would like to see sometime in the close future.

In conclusion for their last album Pan.Thy.Monium definitely went all the way, expanding their ideas further more and presenting us with what i consider their best album. For those of you interested in extreme metal but still gotta have that prog, you can not go wrong with this one or with anything by this band actually. Inovative, progressive, powerful and totally awsome this is 5 stars.

 ...Dawn by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1990
3.03 | 6 ratings

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...Dawn
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Sagichim
Special Collaborator Eclectic Prog Team

3 stars Dawn is a demo tape released in 1990 by Pan.Thy.Monium, one of Dan Swano's early project, even preceding Edge Of Sanity's debut. Usually i don't go for this stuff at all, but because of my big appreciation for this fantastic band, i wanted to check out their early recordings as well. After listening to their 1991 EP recording which wasn't to my liking, i approached this with no expectation at all, and i must say i'm positively surprised. First of all the sound quality is very good for an unknown swedish brutal death metal demo tape, drums are well recorded and mixed, guitars are heavy and loud and the keys are noticable. Overall pretty good.

So what do we have here...4 songs, three of the songs will be rerecorded and released later, two in their debut and one in their second album. The music here shows the band's brutal death metal side definitely not straight forward but with some interesting ideas mixed together. Tom Nouga which was responsible for the soloing guitar and the saxophone in their albums hasn't joined the band just yet, so this is less experimental but still does show the band has some original ideas. The music is doomy and slow but also fast and brutal at times, the songs are short but are not stuck on a main heavy riff, there are some changes in riffs and in tempo, i wouldn't go far and call it progressive but still interesting and well played, this is one of the most exceptional demos out there.

Although this was meant for the underground swedish scene, it shows the band's potential for a different kind of songwriting, this of course turned to be one of the best and most experimental bands out there. 3 stars is adequate for this genre.

 Dream II  by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Singles/EPs/Fan Club/Promo, 1991
3.06 | 8 ratings

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Dream II
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Sagichim
Special Collaborator Eclectic Prog Team

2 stars The first thing i have to say about this EP is that i like it's anguished, tormented cover. Pan.Thy.Monium had always a thing for clocks, all their albums have the clock motif, i believe it's related to their concept story presented on their albums. This is an early recording of the band, featuring Dan Swano on bass guitar, and another Edge Of Sanity member, drummer Benny Larsson.

Actually i can't believe this is the same band who released three magnificent albums in the next 5 years, but then again a band has to start somewhere. Their music at the begining was nothing more than your usual death metal songs, i would have never guessed they would take such a giant leap to release their superb first full lenth album only the next year, an album with clear experimental writing, and a very mature approach. The band sticks with the usual instrumentation, no great solos (or solos at all), and no saxophone just yet. Keys are added, but still doesn't have such a good effect. The songs are really not bad, they are just quite simple, and not impressive. The music is based on the heavy riffing, and when those are mediocre, than there isn't much left to save this release. The band does work as a whole though, and plays a coherent death metal, but not more than this. This would appeal more to fans of the underground swedish death metal scene, or fans of the extreme metal without the progy influences. The sound is actually quite good for an obscure EP and The CD reissue offers a bonus track, which is cool. I really like this band, but i don't have any desire to listen to this again, i suggest to go for their debut. 2 stars, for collectors only!

 Khaooohs by PAN.THY.MONIUM album cover Studio Album, 1993
4.13 | 41 ratings

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Khaooohs
Pan.Thy.Monium Experimental/Post Metal

Review by Sagichim
Special Collaborator Eclectic Prog Team

4 stars Pan.Thy.Monium's second album Khaoohs is pretty much a continuation from where they left us with Dawn Of Dreams. For you who are unaware of this group, it's another project out of the many headed by Dan Swano, well actually it's not just another project, it's the most progressive one and maybe the heaviest one by him, and if i may say, it's definitely my favorite. Swano uses this band to go wild, to be weird and most of all to experiment not just with music but on the vocals department too. Although known for his great vocals, clean or growls, Swano leaves the growling job for his band mate Robert Karlsson, which is doing a great job and manages when he likes, not to be harsh but as pleasant as those vocals can be. The music essentialy is a good mix between extreme metal, jazz and other avant ideas. I'm not a fan of the extreme metal genre at all, but this group just grabbed me with their cool mix of styles and above all great playing.

What makes them one of the best progressive acts are two things, one is their instrumentation, that aside from your usual metal music instruments there's the addition of keys and saxophone, the second is the fact that they are totally progressive, and knows how to write good effective music, the ideas are unusual and interesting, the music is going forward and is not being stuck on a main riff idea, it spreads to all kinds of directions. The band is tight and just knows how to play together, it all sounds very coherent and powerful. Another element that characterizes the band are the guitars, rhythm guitar has a very low sludgy tone that suits the vocals perfectly since they are low and sludgy too, Lead guitar does not have that typical extreme metal tone or that metal way of playing, the sound is very clear and not that distorted, and has very jazzy touch. The solos are amazing, played a lot of times with wah wah which makes it very groovy, with all sorts of jazzy lines and some bluesy lines too. Swano's bass playing is also good as he uses some chorus effect at times, giving the music some melodic touch.

Although half the album contains short songs, that doesn't hold them of being any less progressive than the longer cuts, every song is going in it's own progy way, the ideas are not repeating theirselves, and every song contain something unique, like saxophone/guitar riffs, funky jazzy solos, beautiful melodic parts, all sorts of keys parts, avant-garde and excellent riff after riff. The music goes from slow doomy riffs to faster breaks and all sorts of avant progressive additions. I believe nothing can prepare you to what you are about to hear because it's all pretty unexpected. I wasn't impressed the first time i heard it but definitely felt something special. As it grew on me every time i played it, i realize that it might be better than their debut. You can't go wrong with any of their albums, and this one is also superb. 4.2 stars for this genre. Recommended!!

Thanks to useful_idiot for the artist addition. and to E&O Team for the last updates

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