Ewigkeit - _Radio Ixtlan_
by: Jackie Smit (
James Fogarty's hard-on for electronic music and ambient experimentation has always been evident in his work with Meads of Asphodel, and so it should come as a surprise to no one to find that when given a platform offering the creative freedom which Ewigkeit clearly affords him, he delves into this framework of influences to an even greater extent. _Radio Ixtlan_ is the fourth album released thus far under the Ewigkeit banner, and far from being merely a collection of blackened electronica, Mr Fog (as he is known around the Earache offices apparently) has chosen to pour just about everything barring country music into the nine songs contained therein. The result is a sonic journey that at times smacks ever so slightly of early Dimmu Borgir ("Powerplant"), Fields of the Nephilim ("Platonic Verses"), Killing Joke ("Journey to Ixtlan") and Moby ("The New Way"). Unfortunately, for all the variety it brings to proceedings, this diversity also results in a very uneven listen. It's not so much inconsistency in terms of overall song quality -- Mr Fog may not be adding anything truly significant to the genres he draws ideas from, but in general the majority of the album remains interesting. _Radio Ixtlan_'s problem lies rather in the inability of its content to form a cohesive whole -- a flaw that is particularly evident when a song like "Strange Volk" lives up to its moniker and breaks from the quasi-cosmic atmosphere with a bizarre, out-of-place folk melody that may as well have been pulled straight off a vintage Amorphis record. That Earache claim comparisons to _The Dark Side of the Moon_ doesn't exactly illicit any leniency toward this effort either. _Radio Ixtlan_ may be an entertaining record, but a milestone? Not quite.
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