Spirit The Earth Aflame
Review by Allan on October 25, 2002.
I have always liked a band that strives to improve. It seems that if a band has the will to move beyond what they’ve accomplished already, they’re more enjoyable and rewarding. Such is the case with Primordial and their third album “Spirit the Earth Aflame”. After two albums Primordial has now reached a new standard for themselves. “Spirit the Earth Aflame” is the culmination of the past, and Primordial has taken full advantage of themselves, creating what will be the first album that they have their own unique voice on.
Primordial has always been a good band, but now they’re great. They’ve taken important steps forward from their previous material to make their music better. Before “Spirit the Earth Aflame”, Primordial’s music was damaged by the mediocre production quality. It didn’t serve the music justice because it didn’t hold the clarity that was necessary for Primordial’s blend of electric and acoustic guitar, as well as the bands use of some very bombastic drumming. On “Spirit the Earth Aflame” the production has the necessary clarity to serve Primordial’s music more accurately. Prior to “Spirit the Earth Aflame”, Primordial had a difficult time writing songs that flowed properly. They never quite became whole, and could very well become boring and lose the listener before the end of the song. On “Spirit the Earth Aflame” Primordial has again made the necessary changes. Now the songs move along gracefully, building themselves up and breaking down, introduction new sections that immediately make connections with the rest of the song. The improvements have been made and they’re entirely noticeable.
Primordial layer their songs with many details, ranging from underlying guitar tones to keyboard melodies. The layering does everything from making a simple chord progression more interesting to building the sections up, or even to grabbing the listener’s attention to the fine detail. Atmosphere makes its appearance known as immediately as it can, from the second the album begins to fade in from your speakers until it fades out. Primordial create a sound that is along the lines of “Hammerheart” era Bathory in terms of atmosphere: extremely ostentatious and epic, yet not to pretentious for its own good. Further down Primordial’s music you’ll find that vocalist A.A. Nemtheanga creates quite a line of diversity in his performance. From his nearly spoken vocal passages, to black metal shrieks, to his grandiose singing, all of it fits the music extremely well and never comes across as tasteless. To complete everything, the band puts as much of their heart into their music as they do with their Irish heritage. Their music is on a very personal level and you feel that when you listen to Primordial.
Bottom Line: Primordial has now found out how to utilize their ability to make well thought out, excellently composed songs that offer an amazing atmosphere as well as great musicianship, all on a very personal and unique level. Check this one out.
Categorical Rating Breakdown
Rating: 8.2 out of 10