Aghora - Aghora ©2000 Dobles Productions Inc.
1. Immortal Bliss
2. Satya
3. Transfiguration
4. Frames
5. Mind's Reality
6. Kali Yuga
7. Jivatma
8. Existence
9. Anugraha

Is there such a thing as folk metal? I have been trying to pigeonhole this CD into some category or another, but it seems to defy quantifying. Call it progressive metal though that is woefully short of the whole picture.

Since the band has two former members of Cynic in it, you might expect it to sound like an extension of Cynic, but that is not the case. The closest comparison I can come up with is that Aghora's sound is like a heavier version of Fleming and John's Delusions of Grandeur. Most of that comparison come's from the similarity between singer Danishta Rivero's beautiful voice and singing style with that of Fleming McWilliams, though there are some noticeable similarities in the music as well.

Musically, the play is loose but technical with a middle-eastern timbre lacing into the songs. Some of that timbre is carried by the lyrics and vocal track. The lyrics are very introspective and have overtones of spiritual searching in them. The guitar tracks are heavy, thrashy and intricate though not in the "I am a guitar hero" vein. They are more like a free form guitar style improvised during the recording session. In fact, the track Jivatma is described by the band as a jam session that was spontaneously played. The guitar solo in it sounds a great deal like the solo in Uriah Heep's Magician's Birthday track.

When you combine the unusual play with exceptional quality vocals, the result is almost always interesting. This is definitely push the envelope music and will prove to be way to the left or right of what you most likely are accustomed to in your listening. After a few listens you'll find that it has insinuated itself into your mind and you'll appreciate the fresh approach to the songs that are found on this CD.

Review by Matthew Braymiller

Review date: 08/2000

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