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Arcturus - Constellation CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

2.24 | 15 ratings

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2 stars "Constellation" is a pre-album EP release by Norwegian black metal act Arcturus. "Constellation" is a 4 track EP. All four tracks would later appear in re-recorded versions on the 1996 debut album by Arcturus: "Aspera Hiems Symfonia" ("Icebound Streams And Vapours Gray" would be re-named "Wintry Grey"). The EP was released in 1994 through Nocturnal Art Productions and was in it´s original form limited to 500 copies. The material from "Constellation" have been re-released on the "Aspera Hiems Symfonia/Constellation/My Angel (2002)" compilation album. The lineup for the EP consists of Steinar Sverd Johnsen (Keyboards), Kristoffer "Garm" Rygg (vocals), Thomas Thormodsæter Haugen aka Samoth (guitars) and Jan Axel Blomberg aka Hellhammer (drums). Members of such prolific Norwegian black metal acts as Emperor, Mayhem and Ulver.

The music on the EP is the first example of the symphonic and neo-classical influenced black metal that would later become a part of Arcturus sound. The music is predominantly keyboard driven, atmospheric, and symphonic black metal with both raspy and clean vocals. It is dominated by Steinar Sverd Johnsen´s keyboard playing and this is definitely music for those who enjoy their black metal with lots of keyboards and neo-classical influences. Arcturus music has as many similarities to neo-classical tinged power metal as it has to black metal.

The musicianship are on a good level but the sound production is a bit murky and to my ears not really up to professional standards. There are undeniably lots of promise on "Constellation" but the band still needed a couple of years of maturing and as the tracks have been both re-recorded and re-released in better versions and easier accessible formats this EP is very much a collector´s item and as the sound quality of the recording isn´t very high a 2.5 star (50%) rating is warranted.

UMUR | 2/5 |


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