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"Of Erthe and Axen" Act I - Xanthochroid

Something of an experience

Of Erthe and Axis: Act 1's lack of some essential characteristics, such as the cold atmosphere, can be both a plus and a minus. Personally, I miss these black elements, but on the other hand, is the dominant symphonic elements is precisely what makes that the plate is unique. Therefore, it deserves a nice 7'is, and I will clearly recommend Xanthochroids Of Erthe and Axis: Act 1 to you, who would like to broaden your black metal horizons.



When black metal is moving on new territories

Xanthochroid are a progressive black metal band from California, USA, who is not afraid to climb out of the dark, black cave, as the stereotypical black metal bands often find themselves in. They are willing to paint their sound with a wide color palette, in spite of the black metallens traditional "rules". Xanthochroid has since 2005 incorporated symphonic elements in their non-traditional black metal style, which easily can be heard on their debut album, Blessed He with Boils, from 2012. After four years of silence – with the exception of a few singles – is Xanthochroid ready with the first part of their albumserie, Of Erthe and Axis.

Magnificent symphony of high quality

Where Xanthochroids earlier works, such as their first EP, Incultus , from 2011, balancing black metal with epic, melodic and progressive elements, as a result Of Erthe and Axis: Act 1 , unfortunately, of a lack of black elements. There are turned down for the distorted guitars, if the space in the soundscape is taken over by the orchestral strings. The symphonic elements have always been in the band's sound, but not near as much as on this disc. It asks a big question... Does it matter?

The answer is: No, not at all. Of Erthe and Axis: Act 1 is a magnificent, melodious, and utterly epic experience that requires the listener is willing to ignore the absence of black metal-stamped. The vocals go from high screams to a certain degree sounds inspired by Ihsahn from Emperor (a compliment, if you ask me), to the powerful and beautiful clean vocals that waft through the record like a mighty eagle.

The plate offers a lot of variety and dynamism. One moment you can hear the strings from an acoustic guitar, with elegance and serenity lets the listener float on a cloud. These passages are woven into the big bang from the symfoniorkesteret, without that it feels forced. It makes the experience of listening to the plate is floating. The record feels like a unified work and not merely eight songs, put together in one volume.

>> Check the songs and lyrics here