Agalloch - _The Grey_
(Vendlus, 2004)
by: Quentin Kalis (5.5 out of 10)
This is intended as the final part of a trilogy that preceded _The Mantle_ and _Tomorrow Will Never Come_. I admit that although I have heard Agalloch before, this was the first time I actually sat down and listened to them. I seriously doubt that _The Grey_ would have been the ideal introduction, as it consists of only two songs which are complete opposites in terms of quality.

Opener "The Lodge (Dismantled)" is simply amazing. A repetitive and hypnotic riff forms the basis of the song, creating a spellbinding atmosphere, allowing the not insubstantial twelve minutes of its playing time to simply drift by.

By comparison, the eight minute long "Odal (Nothing Remix)" can't go by quickly enough. While I am not averse to experimental electronica, this amateurish abortion of ambience and static soundscapes is unlikely to receive any accolades. It couldn't possibly be clearer that this is filler material even if it were explicitly labelled as such. Coming after the mesmerizing splendour of the first song this is a massive letdown.

I'd award the two songs a 9 and a 2 respectively, providing an aggregate score of 5.5 out of 10. This score is not really an accurate reflection, as it suggests a CD composed largely of mediocre music and doesn't quite convey any subtle distinctions that may exist. On the other hand, I can't award a higher score because of the more positive implications that may have. Nonetheless it is worth obtaining for "The Lodge" alone -- though given that only 1000 copies were printed, it is unlikely that any remain.


(article published 19/10/2004)

5/30/2014 M Dolson 9.5 Agalloch - The Serpent & the Sphere
12/8/2010 J Carbon 8.5 Agalloch - Marrow of the Spirit
8/12/2006 P Azevedo 9 Agalloch - Ashes Against the Grain
9/1/2002 A McKay 9.5 Agalloch - The Mantle
8/12/2001 B Meloon 7 Agalloch - Of Stone, Wind, and Pillor
7/7/1999 B Meloon 9 Agalloch - Pale Folklore
3/28/2011 J Carbon Agalloch / Worm Ouroboros / Vindensang / Aeriel Ruin The Gods in Ruins
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