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Maudlin Of The Well - Part the Second CD (album) cover


Maudlin Of The Well


Experimental/Post Metal

4.22 | 724 ratings

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5 stars 4.65 Stars. The perfect introduction to MOTW

Part the second is the comeback album after 8 years of hiatus (although sister band Kayo Dot was still active) and it was the first MOTW/KD album I bought. Like many people on PA I stumbled across them on the top 100 and found out this album is 100 % free so I thought "why not?". I'm so glad I gave them a go as both bands now rank among my personal top 15.

PTS is much more delicate and less intense compared to their previous albums, but it still keeps the signature weirdness and unpredictability that I've come to love. The structure of the album is interesting with each song being darker, heavier and more experimental than the previous. But the progression from beauty and order into metal and randomness is gradual, unlike previous albums which switch randomly between the two.

"An Excerpt from 6,000,000,000,000 Miles Before the First, or, the Revisitation of the Blue Ghost" (what a title!) begins with a cheerful tune and classical instruments are tastefully added. Things slow down to a crawl with Toby singing with as much delicacy as he can muster. This lasts for several minutes making it great for chilling out. The second half of the song is a playful (i.e. it has lots of cool twists and turns but staying light-hearted throughout) but incredibly beautiful instrumental. This is probably my favourite MOTW song ever, its just pure beauty from start to finish.

"Another Excerpt: Keep Light Near You, Even When Dying" starts with some lovely orchestral arrangement done in such a way that I almost think I'm listening to pure classical music. Gradually more rock is substituted for the classical until before you know it you are getting blasted with some awesome (and quite rough, almost metal at the end) solos. As the intensity peaks the song does a wild mood change with very tense vocals and atmospheres. This tension continues for the rest of the song and finishes fairly abruptly. I love everything up to the intense solos, the rest it just plain weird.

"Rose Quartz Turning to Glass" starts in a similar manor to the last track. There is quite a bit of classical music, but there is also lots of odd sound effects firing of randomly in the background. It takes time to get used to this but it is definitely very original. Things then get really strange with some mad man making stupid groans and shouts while a violin and aggressive electric guitar play in the background. And no I'm not making this up! Anyway the song then morphs into a very catchy and straightforward rock song which continues until the end. This song is very much an acquired taste, but fortunately for the band I do like it!

"Clover Garland Island" starts of with very dark and jarring metal which can sound quite shocking to ones ears given how beautiful the last 3 songs were (for the most part). The vocals are harmless but sung in a chaotic manor which only adds to the tension. Things quieten down with more classical music and background noises (dogs barking, flowing water etc.). Toby then sings with lots of passion and melancholy but without any sense of harmony. That sounds like a bad thing but it really works with the subdued music. There is one bust of energy at the end which is short lived. Like the last song it is totally unique (making it very hard for me to describe!) and a acquired taste, so give this song time before you discount it.

"Laboratories of the Invisible World (Rollerskating the Cosmic Palmistric Postborder)" (seriously, what's with the song titles!) starts as a very slow and gentle ballad...and then turns into some fierce avant-garde metal! I won't even bother describing this, just expect lots of mind expanding twists and turns. One of the best metal songs MOTW have ever done, definitely a masterpiece.

PTS is not a easy album, but it is the least intense MOTW album and it is not quite as weird as KD. Therefore if you cannot enjoy this album, I wouldn't go looking for their non-free releases. I was amazed by the wonderful and strange world Toby and Co have created and that hasn't changed with time. So go on, expand your mind with this free release (and don't forget to donate!). I hope this won't be the last MOTW album but if it is they couldn't have finished on a higher note.

LakeGlade12 | 5/5 |


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