Reflections Of The I
Review by Jack on March 20, 2002.
It is really quite the phenomenon on how closely metal and classical music have become married to each other within the wide, weird and wonderful genre that is metal. To an outside listener the worlds of metal and classical couldn’t be at further ends of the spectrum if they tried, yet to one such as ourselves classical and metal are almost synonymous with each other. Bands like Hollenthon base a great deal of their metal around classical tunes from yesteryear and there are constantly bands doing cover versions of well known classical pieces (Alchemist and Jeff Wayne’s ‘War of the Worlds’ and At Vance’s cover of Vilvaldi’s ‘The Four Seasons’) as well as bands like Dimmu Borgir using whole orchestral arrangements to back their latest albums. Winds’ latest offering in the form of “Reflections of the I” takes this concoction a little further again.
The classical themes of strong string sections (say that three times fast!) overlaid with hardish metal sections makes “Reflections of the I” quite a trial at first to wrap one’s head around. The music on initial listens does not grab you in and demand your attention like other releases of the same ilk, “Reflections of the I” clearly does not have the attention seeking prowess that other records have but instead is more subtle in its conception and while not grabbing you straight away, rest assured you will be pulled in eventually. If most records are like an eager puppy craving and demanding attention right away, Winds and their “Reflection of the I” is the mature and aristocratic domestic feline who will make you work for your appreciation but once found you will have a friend for life.
The brilliance displayed on “Reflections of the I” is quite outstanding and it is records like this that make me proud to listen to metal and wonder why on earth there is any other genres in the world. Vocals that make you cringe for a world far away from the evils of our own, drums from Hellhammer that are neither fast nor brutal, but yet contain and ignite the mood that Winds is longing for with “Reflections of the I”. There is not a lot of anger and harshness that can be uttered about “Reflections of the I”; it may not be the most accessible of records, but in our day and age what is not?
Bottom Line: “Reflections of the I” does take a while to seep and wear in. This is the only major detracting feature of the album from Winds. Taking the marriage of classical and metal to the next level, “Reflections of the I” is a clear winner.
Categorical Rating Breakdown
Rating: 9.5 out of 10