Agathodaimon - _Blacken the Angel_
(Nuclear Blast, 1998)
by: Pedro Azevedo (
As a "soft" black metal album, _Blacken the Angel_ is just average; but as a black/doom album, it can get very good. In the second half of "Ribbons/Requiem", several parts of the fifteen minute long "Near Dark" and most of the superb "Tristetea Vehementa", Agathodaimon showcase high quality black/doom. The rest of the album, however, is made of mostly rather unremarkable blackened metal. Not that there aren't several good parts in these other tracks, but they're generally neither harsh, extreme or simply good enough to match the quality of the black/doom sections of _Blacken the Angel_. Therefore, there are several tracks in this hour long album that should have been merged into some sort of medley. The fact that keyboards (which are so important in the three songs above) are less used in these tracks doesn't help, either. Apart from that, the three black/doom songs that I mentioned before fortunately total about half an hour, which puts _Blacken the Angel_, overall, a bit above average -- mainly thanks to "Tristetea Vehementa". It could have been much better, though.
(article published 1/16/1999)
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