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Classic Review: Sacramentum - Far Away From the Sun
Far Away From the Sun

Label: Adipocere Records
Year released: 1996
Duration: 46:06
Tracks: 9
Genre: Black Metal

Rating: 4.75/5

Review online: February 3, 2007
Reviewed by: Lars Christiansen
Readers Rating
Far Away From the Sun

Rated 4.55/5 (90.95%) (42 Votes)

Yes, believe it folks – here we have a Gothenburg based band who released an album in the later half of the nineties that didn't blow goat scrote! Sacramentum must've had a hard time of it though, as to the mere outsider they could easily have been mistaken for another bunch of wannabe Gothenburg kids trying to ape their heroes. This is not helped by the fact that they have a vocalist that sounds just like Jon Nodtveidt, and play music that, well, sounds just like Dissection. However, all these notions flitter away when you delve deeper into this album to discover that not only does the music kick all kinds of butt, but it also manages to convey melody via blazing supersonic riffs in a way that many thought only Dissection were capable of.

When first picking this album up over ten years ago, I was a crazed Dissection fan, after reading a review of this album where they mentioned that they sounded similar; and something in the tone of the review instantly made me want to check it out. To this day, I never regretted spending a penny of the money I sent away in that little airmail envelope. Smashing through the speakers like a windstorm, opener 'Fog's Kiss' shows the band at their best, with varied pace, shimmering guitar melodies and on occasion almost classical arrangements similar to those found on Dark Tranquillity's 'The Gallery' (which was only released months prior to 'Far Away From the Sun'). There's also some early At the Gates to be heard in the rhythmic riff-work of 'Obsolete Tears', as well as some Lord Belial to be heard interspersed throughout the album (although that's not too surprising I suppose, seeing as guitarist Thomas Backelin was in both bands).

So, with all these comparisons how can I say they're set apart from the plethora of melo-black/death clones then? Well, this album in particular has an unexplainable aura about it, not dissimilar to the aura of either of the classic Dissection albums, intangible and inexplicable, but most certainly there. Almost as if some vast dark presence was present during the album recording sessions (no; not Barry White) and captured forevermore in sonic form. This, when coupled with some truly incredible music played by talented musicians, gives them the edge over the multitude of lifeless pastiches wanting nothing more but to be the next big thing. As is an unfortunate par for the course it seems, Sacramentum went on to release two more albums before disbanding, neither of which is worth a moment of your time regrettably. However, it'd be indecorous to Satan himself to not at least check this top quality album out.

Other related information on the site
Review: Finis Malorum (reviewed by Michel Renaud)
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