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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2017



01. Lacrimosa
- Testimonium
02. Sólstafir
- Berdreyminn
03. Soror Dolorosa
- Apollo
04. Ulver
- The Assassination Of Julius Caesar
05. Myrkur
- Mareridt
06. Sun Of The Sleepless
- To The Elements
07. Moonspell
- 1755
08. Au Champ Des Morts
- Dans La Joie
09. Andras
- Reminiszenzen...
10. Svartsinn
- Mørkets Variabler

More HERE

Random album

Alcest - Shelter (2014) - Review

Band: Alcest
Album title: Shelter
Release date: 17 January 2014
Label: Prophecy Productions

Tracklisting:
01. Wings
02. Opale
03. La Nuit Marche Avec Moi
04. Voix Sereines
05. L'Eveil Des Muses
06. Shelter
07. Away
08. Délivrance

When searching for beauty and aesthetics in extreme music there is a band that can't be missed and its name is Alcest. Active since 2000 and already with four albums Alcest became a synonym and after all are the founders of genre often called post black metal, shoegaze black metal, blackgaze or even metalgaze. They were followed by a horde of bands trying to imitate them but Alcest remained unique and with unreacheable greatness in this field. Bands mastermind and multi-instrumentalist Neige and his fellow on drums since 2009 Winterhalter are back with an album that by all means opens a new era for the two French artists. Their metal past is now completely left behind, even though that was expected after the beautiful previous effort, Les Voyages De L'âme, released in 2012 (winner of Terra Relicta Dark Music Awards 2012).

In one word Shelter is pure sonic beauty! Once again new musical territories have beign discovered, vast atmospheres that simply sucks you into their world. And like the album title suggest, Shelter is giving you a safe, comfortable, yet warm place to escape from everydays rutines. Neige's safe place is the sea and each track up here is dedicated to its secrets and beauty. Even if you don't understand French language (like I don't), because most of the lyrics are written in it just as on every album from the band before, you can feel it, like a warm breeze when sitting at the seashore the words and melodies penetrate your mind and paint amazing pictures. It's a fantasy word that must be indulged and explored.

Shelter embraces with its shoegaze textures and dreamy soundscapes. It has a lot of so called dream-pop like components, that can be associated with pioneers of the genre Cocteau Twins, or even dreamy new wave elements similar to for example This Mortal Coil, yet it is by all matters and in a strange way a typical Alcest product. A lot of acoustic guitar passages that so perfectly give air to a bit heavier, still often melodic, post-rock guitar riffs, simply mesmerizing synths and unique ethereal vocals, just to form an outstanding experience. There are moments where slowly evolving song compositions breathe in a similar way like latest most atmospheric songs from Anathema, and the track "Away", with guest vocalist Neil Halstead from English legendary dream-pop band Slowdive, recalls in mind the tracks of Dead Can Dance where Brendan Perry takes the role of lead singer. And not to mention the beautiful and shivers rendering guest string section by Sweden's Promise And The Monster’s Billie Lindahl and Amiina.

Such a deep and emotional music is hard to be found and I don't expect to hear it anytime soon. Even if at the first glance it sounds so simple it's by paying just more attentintion tremendously dense and rich. Songs often smoothly build on the ambiance and almost bring tears in the eyes. There are so many light, catchy, soundtrack-like, almost at the border of becoming too sweet, melodies, and with mastered, almost progressive song structures its a winner. Just listen how everything blossoms on "Voix Sereines", how interesting is a distant playful piano sound in the title track  and how heartfelt is epic, ten minutes long adventure called "Délivrance". And to mention that the production was done by Sigur Rós's producer Birgir Jón Birgisson who masterfully gave to Shelter kind of ethereal bonus and how to say,... depth, another dimension, astonishing rich sound. Masterpiece!

Review written by: T.V.
Rating: 9,5/10

Recommended by Terra Relicta

Band: Skinner Box
Album title: Alpha Waves
Release date: 27 April 2017
Label: Self-Released

Skinner Box did an album that is hardly to be believed that is only their debut. Everything is almost perfect, the sound is rich, it has a big replay value, it's not just another generic rock album, it has depth, it has soul and it simply shines of creativity. The songs are very dynamic, absolutely not repetitive, with plenty of soul melting melodies, you can find some true rocking ones, some playful, danceable popy rhythms and sparkling lines, a couple of highly emotional tunes, but all of them are bent in some kind of a melancholic veil. Considering that almost everything was done in self-production is just another plus that shows that we have to deal here with matured, devoted and professional musicians who perfectly know what they are doing. Skinner Box are a band that needs attention from everyone who is into dark alternative rock music!

Read a full review HERE