Gorgonus Aura

Algol - Gorgonus Aura ©2001 12th Planet Records
1. Omniscient
2. Restraint From My Desire
3. The Quest For Archaism
4. Exodus
5. Abscond
6. Murmurous Screams Of Repugnance (Suffocated)
7. Benighted Reflections
8. Armageddon

I like to compare this album with a cute, limping kitten. Yes, it's cute, tries to be ferocious but just seems kinda silly. Ultimately, you feel sorry for it and wish it'd be better. Algol are an American black metal band of sorts, though they tend to stick closer to the Emperor and Sigh camp than the Darkthrone tent: synths a-plenty, out-of-tune acoustic guitars, plenty of "romantic" bits, and neat atypical song structures.

It pains me to hear albums like this where there are a lot of good ideas being thrown around, but that end up falling apart as the songs go along, diluted by other far less exciting bits. The production on the album doesn't help much in things as the guitar tone is flat and muddy, which frankly doesn't sound good in this context, and the whole thing is generally rather bland, with the synths often pulled up front. It doesn't help that the musicianship leaves a lot to be desired; there are even times on this album that almost make Flipper sound like Watchtower.

The music tends to hop around between "atmospheric" sections and the more straightforward metal bits, and generally I'd have to say that the former tends to be the most impressive ones, which is usually not the case with these sorts of albums. While this isn't by any means a horrible album, I still can't think of any reason to recommend it to anyone, as there are far better bands out there doing similar things.

Review by Řystein H-O

Review date: 05/2002

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