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The Gathering - If_Then_Else CD (album) cover


The Gathering


Experimental/Post Metal

3.98 | 133 ratings

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4 stars What a way to open the 21st century! What an album! What unexpected variety! From heavy ("Shot to Pieces," "Colorado Incident") to dreamy ("Herbal Movement," "Morphias Waltz," and "Pathfinder"), loud to subtle soft (often within the same song!)--and so EMOTIONAL! Such beautiful vocals! In my opinion, this is the best of THE GATHERING's contributions to the music world. Superlatives are necessary to describe the likes of "Rollercoaster" (9/10) "Amity" (10/10) "Beautiful War" (9/10), "Analog Park" (10/10), "Saturnine" (10/10) and especially my favorite Gathering song of all-time, "Herbal Movement" ("makes everything hazy"--and gives me the feeling that I, too, had taken the hookah.) Can't say enough about the inclusion of synths, classical acoustic instruments, and alternating heavy-yet-subtle and sublime-yet-heart-wrenching themes within individual songs (like "Rollercoaster," "Beautiful War," and "Saturnine"). I love this album. A prog masterpiece? I guess not--it's progginess is in question. As BONNEK said, lots of experimentation with sound but not truly an effort that challenges musical form and constructs.

4.5 stars--adventurous, mature and consistently high, just not innovative "progressive" enough.

Still: Highly Recommended!

BrufordFreak | 4/5 |


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