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Agalloch - The Silence of Forgotten Landscapes CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

4.04 | 15 ratings

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4 stars What can we expect from Agalloch other than pure gold and majesty?

"The Silence Of Forgotten Landscapes" gives us a showcase of what Agalloch can deliver in and off stage.

In this recording there are 2 guitars, bass, and drums, with Haughm on main vocals and guitar. The whole set is filmed in black and white, and while having heavy editing, it does not distract or annoy the viewer in any sense. Haughm is clearly the protagonist, as in all Agalloch, yet the whole band is displayed accordingly.

1. Limbs (10:45): Opening both this live show and their (at that moment) latest album, "Ashes Against The Grain", this songs kicks in with a lot of power and ambience, trademark of the band. The guitar work is tremendous, featuring both clean and distorted guitars. The ending is fascinating, intense and memorable. (5/5)

2. Falling Snow (8:54): A song that many may find "commercial" or at least far from the usual Agalloch, it is delivered really well, especially the nu-metal-ish end section. (4/5)

3. As Embers Dress the Sky (4:33): An Agalloch classic, recurrent in their shows, once again demonstrates the amazing guitar work and songwriting of Haughm's school. (4/5)

4. Dead Winter Days (7:11): Another song from their debut album "Pale Folklore", with particularly enjoyable lyrics and singing in this live recording. (4/5)

5. I Am the Wooden Doors (5:36): From their sophomore "The Mantle", a heavy track with pulverizing drum beats, that really showcases Agalloch's possibilities. (5/5).

6. In the Shadow of Our Pale Companion (12:11): Probably the second highlight of the show (being the last song the main one), this epic song from their second album "The Mantle" let us witness the whole world of Agalloch. The classic guitars, the growls, the deep choirs (Ahhhhh), and all the folky power that never dissapoints. Notably, this recording features a change in the middle section. While the original recording has slow, folk classic guitars in a really ambient bridge, this one replaces this with guitar riffs more common in post-black metal circles. Many may be dissapointed, as the original bridge is one of Agalloch's best moments, it definitely does not suck in anyway, and in exchange, brings a new look at the song. Anyway, the song in general is beautiful, truly the best from Agalloch. (5/5)

7. Not Unlike the Waves (9:41): From the (back then) latest album "Ashes...", this track is a really strong one, in terms of riffing, ambience and vocals. Truly enjoyable. (4/5)

8. Bloodbirds (11:19): Now. In their album "Ashes...", the last track is called "Our Fortress Is Burning", which is divided in 3 sections. The first one is instrumental, prominently featuring clean guitars. The second one, Bloodbirds, is the closing of the whole album, a storm of deep dark metal, truly the best of the band so far. And the las one, The Grain, is a dark ambient instrumental track, like 7 minutes of electronic and haunting sounds. In this live recording, Agalloch plays the first two. It stars warmly, with captivating musicianship. As Bloodbirds begin, you can feel something building up (just like the flow of the song), and as the final part is reached, and Haughm delivers his directly-from-hell-yet-wildly-desperate-and-desolate vocals, the whole concert is crushed and destroyed by the dark chords being played. A minimalistic, epic, post-dark-metal journey. Without a doubt, the best moment recorded live in these parts of the metal world. (5/5).

At the end, there is a destructive "coda", if you let me. Haughm and the rest bang their instruments, hitting and beating them while the last chord from Bloodbirds keeps playing. This may be referent to "The Grain", yet it clearly shows the chaotic yet graceful nature of Haughm's work.

Divine. (4.5/5)

TheOppenheimer | 4/5 |


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