For All Tid
Review by Michael on June 1, 2001.
This is an interesting one. It came very early in their career, being Dimmu Borgir’s first full-length release. And to be honest, I’m not exactly sure what to make of it... but that may be just because this is the only album that is completely in their native tongue of Norweigen and I don’t understand a fucking word!!!!
One thing I definitely like is the intro-first track. It sounds like it has been done on a cheap Casio keyboard, but with the classic lightning effect to begin it, then the smooth go-to-sleep-my-little-baby type synth keys it is very effective and will suck you into a deep trance. I found myself again and again starring blankly into space and feeling very mellow indeed after this track. The spoken word is also effective, I think even more so because I have no idea what Shagrath is talking about and I find myself imagining my own meanings. Instantly you can tell this is a low-budget recording. The drums lack clarity and the guitars/bass lack bottom end and depth. All drums on this album were played by Shagrath himself so don’t expect the double-kick and drum fill prowess of Tjodalv. But in defence of Shagrath as a drummer, they are solid, simple beats that do work to create a good backbone for the rhythm section which, unfortunately sounds like the bass and the guitar(s) were played through a small transistor practice-amp which is only capable of mid-range fuzz with no bottom end to be found at all. The guitar lines themselves are ok... but there is certainly nothing that stood out to me. Only simple 4-bar, 4 Chord rock riffs played as fast as their hands would go, but as in most Black Metal the familiar guitar-following-synth is there which sweetens things somewhat. Stian did very well as these lines are very catchy and easy on the ears and go a long way to make up for the poor sounding rhythm section. Now we come to my major issue with this album... the vocals! The gutteral throat-scraping vocals well known to Dimmu Borgir fans are there (with maybe just a touch too much reverb at times) which is great, but some clean vocals have been attempted here, mainly in Track 3 and I’m sorry Shagrath... but what were you thinking? Recent Dimmu Borgir releases have some fantastic clean vocals that I am a huge fan of, but I’m afraid something is very wrong with these puppies!!!!! They sound like a nasty cross between German Folk Singing and a (much thinner and more evil) Pavarotti!!!! Lets just put it down to experience shall we!
Favourite Track? ‘For all Tid’ ...it’s the only track I found on this CD that had any real contrast and variation.
Bottom Line: This is a pretty good debut for a now very popular and well know Black Metal band. But in comparison to some of the other Nordic metal bands within the genre at the same time it's perhaps a little weak.
Rating: 6.5 out of 10