Borknagar - _Origin_
(Century Media, 2006)
by: Jackie Smit (
Some will undoubtedly praise Borknagar's foray into fully-fledged acoustic territory as bold and experimental. I prefer to think of it as pompous and boring. Nevermind the fact that it's been done before and done significantly better (Ulver and Opeth come to mind as prime examples); _Origin_ simply fails dismally to capture the mesmerizing atmosphere of the unplugged sequences scattered across the sonic plains of its predecessors. Nine songs, thirty-five minutes and an overload of flute-playing amount to little more than an exercise in self-indulgence, with the only respite being a reworking of _The Archaic Course_'s "Oceans Rise". But let's be honest here: Borknagar have been cruising steadily downhill since 2001's _Empiricism_, and who could blame them? Their early discography was nothing short of fantastic, and it's understandable that they should run short on ideas sooner or later. Needless to say, they do so spectacularly here.
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