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Review: Atlantean Kodex - The Golden Bough
Atlantean Kodex
The Golden Bough

Label: Cruz Del Sur Music
Year released: 2010
Duration: 65:25
Tracks: 9
Genre: Heavy Metal

Rating: 5/5

Review online: September 25, 2010
Reviewed by: MetalMike
Readers Rating
The Golden Bough

Rated 4.37/5 (87.48%) (107 Votes)

To say Atlantean Kodex's The Golden Bough was highly anticipated is the understatement of the year. The band has achieved an almost mythical status within the world of Heavy Metal, due in large part to their 4-song EP, The Pnakotic Demos, as well as a myriad of ridiculously low print run releases. As a result of that, the weight of expectation alone could have easily crushed the band, yet it did not. Atlantean Kodex not only live up to that expectation, but blow it away. The Golden Bough is an unbelievably mature, well executed album that provides a blueprint of how Epic Metal is done.

The Golden Bough is huge, there's no other way to say it. From the crushingly heavy guitars on the opening track "Fountain of Nepenthe," which launches from your speakers and tries to break its way into your chest, to the scope of the lyrics, including the mystical "Temple of Katholic Magick," the album is incredibly powerful. Everything is executed perfectly. Even the use of sound effects, like the distant calling of crows at the beginning of "A Prophet in the Forest," enhances the transitions from song to song, rather than interrupting the flow of the album. Atlantean Kodex deftly mix their massive riffs with softer passages to create a listening experience like no other. Speed varies from slow, almost doom riffing on tracks like the aforementioned "Fountain of Nepenthe" and "Temple of Katholic Magick," to speedier numbers like "Disciples of the Iron Crown" and "The Atlantean Kodex." The band pays homage to classic Heavy Metal bands like Black Sabbath and Manowar without ever copying them. There are a number of lengthier songs on The Golden Bough and, in the true test of quality writing, at no point do they get boring. In fact, after 15 minutes of "A Prophet in the Forest" I found myself asking "is it over already?" That song, and the whole album, in fact, could go on for hours, as far as I'm concerned.

What's even more amazing is The Golden Bough is Atlantean Kodex's first full-length album. A performance this mature for a young band is something special, indeed. No self-respecting fan of Heavy Metal should be without The Golden Bough. A masterpiece.

Other related information on the site
Review: The Course of Empire (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: The Golden Bough (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: The Pnakotic Demos (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Review: The White Goddess (reviewed by MetalMike)
Review: The White Goddess (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Interview with Manuel Trummer (Guitar) on September 12, 2010 (Interviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Interview with Manuel Trummer (Guitars) on September 8, 2013 (Interviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
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