In the mist of morning
Heaps upon heaps of mellotron combined with heavy prog rock guitars and emotional vocals ensure that this debut by the Norwegian six piece is firmly ensconced in the retro catalogue. This is proggy folk rock at its most haunting and with an eerie cinematic feel in its instrumental passages that would sit well in any psychological horror. The "out in nature" aspect of this album with its extensive use of field recordings works in places but fails in others -- such as in the pot-of-boiling-potatoes of "In the woods". A lot of the music itself is quite reminiscent of the likes of fellow countrymen Arcturus or Enslaved with the heavier guitar parts very like the stoned tree-hugging brother of the former's "Sideshow symphonies". To hear that style in such a different setting is refreshing for someone who is familiar with any of Arcturus' material and, likewise, prog fans who enjoy "In the mist of morning" could do worse than check out "Sideshow...". The only problem is that once the comparison is in there, that's all you can hear. On the whole, however, this is one stormer of a debut that stands up well alongside classic releases from the famed Swedish bands of yesteryear such as Anekdoten and Änglagård.
- John Norby