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Review: Mithras - Behind The Shadows Lie Madness
Behind The Shadows Lie Madness

Label: Candlelight Records
Year released: 2007
Duration: 44:28
Tracks: 12
Genre: Death Metal


Review online: May 7, 2007
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Readers' Rating
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Rated 3.5/5 (70%) (18 Votes)

Mithras are an interesting band from the UK who get points for trying to do something a bit different with their Death Metal. After three releases they have built a good underground buzz, and this, their third album, stands to make for a breakout recording with Candlelight providing world-wide distribution. The only real question is: is it any good, or what?

This is an album that demands real attention – you can't just spin it for background music and expect to get much out of it. There is a lot going on here, and you have to pay attention to it to really reap the benefits. Normally I avoid any hint of progressiveness in Death Metal, but Mithras do not confuse mere technicality with experimentation. They infuse a lot of chaos and variance into their songs, sort of like The Chasm, but Mithras are clearly much more influenced by Morbid Angel than Celtic Frost. The guitar tone is good, if maybe a little weak in the mix, and the drums are a little synth-sounding, but the musicianship is undeniable. Mithras add in spacey keys, some clean vocals, and a cool outer space lead tone to spice things up and give their music a lot of room and dynamic that straight Death Metal would lack. The songs here are complex, multifaceted and intricately put together, and yet they manage to avoid being just wanky.

The first time I spun this I was doing something else, and this album just sounded spastic and annoying. But closer listens revealed a dense and fascinating work filled with a unique combination of visceral crunch and intellectual complexity. Mithras' third album demands close listening to mine out its good stuff, but is well worth the effort. Good stuff.

More about Mithras...
Review: On Strange Loops (reviewed by Sargon the Terrible)
Interview with Leon Macey (Guitars, drums) on December 18, 2010 (Interviewed by Nahsil)
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