Transcending Bizarre? - _The Misanthrope's Fable_
(Dissonart Productions, 2010)
by: Chaim Drishner (8 out of 10)
Albeit the band's more than a decade of existence and triple album resume, this is the first encounter for this reviewer with the Greek band Transcending Bizarre?. Proclaiming their music as being avantgarde, the band play an abrasive, cleverly bombastic and theatrical kind of post-black metal, full of ideas and top notch execution of their musical vision.

Now, avantgarde can be attributed to bands who warp the very pillars of the genre in which they are active, such as Abigor, for instance; taking the basics of the style and twisting them, so that the outcome is both familiar and strange; following the rules of metal without really following them, in a way. _The Misanthrope's Fable_, on the other hand, is a rather straightforward album, playing by the rules of symphonic black metal, but at the same time loaded with welcome additives that complement the basic metal etiquette perfectly. The band have recorded an album that is inclined towards the neo-classical to the same degree as it flirts with electronica or cabaret music. Borrowing from Devil Doll and Arcturus' _La Masquerade Infernale_, through ...And Oceans and Ensoph, to Septic Flesh and Therion, this album is packed with fully realized ideas and fine execution, so that one element never overshadows the next -- never do the band use a riff, a choir line, a keyboard passage to an overkill, and the outcome is a wonderfully well balanced recording which fully portrays the band's skills and originality.

This album is ear-candy from beginning to end, but still, this is a fine metal album, albeit a bit different from the rest; to call this style avantgarde would be a tad far-fetching. The mere fact _The Misanthrope's Fable_ echoes an abundance of great bands who have thought of these very ideas many years before issuing this recording, sometimes to the extent of almost copying certain elements (even though not necessarily consciously or deliberately), prevents this album from becoming the perfect album that it is: almost a masterpiece.


(article published 13/2/2011)

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