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Edge Of Sanity - Crimson CD (album) cover


Edge Of Sanity


Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.23 | 457 ratings

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5 stars The Technical Death Lusíadas: 10/10

I had to do a seven-hours-trip, and to pass time, what better than listen to a bunch of brand new songs? However, as I did so, I kept asking to myself... am I enjoying this? Why am I listening to this song? Why don't I skip? Should I just leave it on the background? Should listening be an active action? Should enjoying be conscious? How do I get immersed?

That's when CRIMSON came in. The music arrived with such passion, quality and timing I listened to the whole forty minutes completely immersed and pleased. It revived on me the amazing feeling that is to enjoy an album thoroughly, to feel delighted, to feel withdrawal and to hear the song's riffs in my mind when I wasn't listening to it, and most importantly, what makes an album truly be worth of five-stars. An album that is just beyond an enjoyment, or a feature of many great songs - an, above everything else, delightful experience.

Now, ending our anecdotal story, let's go to the review.

OPETH receives worldwide acclaim for their successful infusion of progressive elements in the extreme metal genre. Perhaps less known, however not in any way less skillful, stands aside the underrepresented (but luckily not underestimated) Nordic prog death princes of EDGE OF SANITY.

CRIMSON, their fifth record, is the moment the band reached their progressive epitome. Featuring a wide array of diverse and unconventional stylistic, structural and instrumental arrangements, EDGE brings a highly eclectic death metal record.

Featuring Mikael Akerfeldt - a proof the Swedish pioneers are quite friendly among themselves - on the vocals and lead guitar, surprisingly, the guttural singing is not as flawless as one would expect in, say, an OPETH album. It's not bad, not even close, it is merely raw. This doesn't mean anything as there are countless vocal techniques employed here, both clean and not. Mikael and Dan Swano (band frontman) ranges from prophetic corals to deadly groaning, which fits the song's atmosphere nicely. Speaking of which, it has nothing to do with a violent bloodbath linked to the image of typical death metal (although prog death seldom resembles their plebby, needlessly vicious counterpart). Instead, the atmosphere is melodic, aggressive, vivid and rather epic.

Instrumental wise, one would praise the powerful guitar and its constant changes and variety of riffs and bridges and solos. There are acoustic parts, ecstatic thrashy pieces and crushing/melodic riffs. I mean it when I say there are A LOT of riffs, some of which are played a couple of times but the vast being one-timers. In fact, the album is constantly changing - but always keeping in its core a moderate death metal tonality.

There's a reason why the song is so varied, though. It is due to the story being told. The lyrics speak an epic story about a post-apocalyptic world where humans have lost the capability of breeding, yet miraculously the emperor's wife gave birth a girl, who is the chosen one - assuming humans can't breed, she HAS to be a godsend. The frail hopes of humanity's perpetuation, always on check, supposes it has own. But the question brought is... is she daughter of which god, the good or evil one? Will she bring humanity life or end its fragile existence?

Surprisingly, the plot and narrative are extremely accomplished and captivating. I would've never expected such a poetic, beautiful tale written by a death metal band, that would stereotypically focus on all that is brutal and coarse. It's absolutely spectacular how delicately crafted each verse is, with both internal and external rhymes that smoothly intersects different bars. Think of rap's lyrics king' creations and apply a deadly metallic sonority to understand CRIMSON's accomplishment. I am NOT a lyrics person, but I can't not attest that reading the lyrics while listening to the song enhances the experience infinitely.

In the end, CRIMSON is the type of album which you would have to listen several times to asborb each beautiful lyrical or instrumental detail, each nuance and peculiarity, each odd time signature and each uncommon structural feature. And most importantly, it's the type of album you would listen again and again, forever and ever, always wondering when will you find such a superb album again.

... and also what the hell did the last line infer. I mean, seriously...

Luqueasaur | 5/5 |


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