|Review: and Oceans - A.M.G.O.D.|
Label: Century Media
Year released: 2001
Genre: Black Metal
Review online: April 8, 2001
Reviewed by: Michel Renaud
Finland's ...and Oceans are known for experimenting quite a bit with their sound, but this third full-length definitely pushes the limits with the introduction of... techno sounds. I'll discuss the first eight songs and trash the last one at the end.
I was a bit apprehensive when I heard that this album was to have some techno elements in it. I absolutely hate techno music. It's not human. It's noise generated by computers. Anyways, much to my surprise, ...and Oceans managed to create an interesting sound with an interesting mix of crunching guitars and, mostly, not that much techno crap. Hell, even where the techno sounds are used the most, they still sound like they belong in there. I'm not saying I'm a fan of this mix, but at least it's quite tolerable and most of the songs are quite enjoyable. I'm just not sure the music can be categorized as Black Metal though, but I think ...and Oceans' taste for experimentation is an indicative that they probably don't care much for categorization.
The vocals sometime sound a little out of sync - very annoying at times. I don't like those vocal parts, some probably will. I don't know, maybe it'll grow on me with time. Track 1, "Intelligence is Sexy" starts off pretty good, but at around 1:34 has some very crappy vocal parts. Other than that, that song is pretty good. The second song, "White Synthetic Noise" makes very good, limited use of the techno elements and is a killer song. "Tears have no name" is another highlight on the album, very catchy, with quite a bit of techno elements that mix very well with the other instruments. The vocals on this one are, I think, the best of the album. "Esprit de Corps" is kind of forgettable. "Odious and Devious" has a pretty good beat to it, and I have to admit that a lot of it has to do with the techno stuff, although it's the guitar riffs, short and aggressive, that make this great headbanging material. "Of Devilish Tongues" is ok, with "choir" singing that I think the guys should just drop, it's really not their thing. Things do get better around 3:20 with some pretty good instrumental work and very low vocals for about 40 seconds. "Postfuturistika" mostly stands out with its chorus and some fast drumming, a good song overall. "TBA in a Silver Box" is a 4:18 slow-paced instrumental that keeps pretty much the same beat for the whole song, so it gets boring pretty quickly.
Then comes the last track, "New Model World". What the hell is this shit? A 100% techno track on a metal album! Techno makes me violent. Even my cat looks pissed when that song starts and goes away until it's finished. That ought to tell you something. They should have a special edition CD that DOESN'T have that track on it. That's a fucking piece of crap! And to add insult to injury, the damn thing is almost six minutes in length. AAAARRRRGHHH!! It ruins what is otherwise an enjoyable album. This is a very bad joke. Please don't do this again.
Overall, this is a pretty good album which shows ...and Oceans aren't afraid of experimenting, and are very good at it, but really, they could definitely have dropped "New Model World". I'd understand if the album had been released on April 1st, but this is just beyond comprehension.
|Other related information on the site|
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Review: The Dynamic Gallery of Thoughts (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
Interview with Neptune (guitar) on April 28, 2001 (Interviewed by Paul O'Ceannig)
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