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Review: Bethlehem - Stönkfitzchen

Label: Red Stream
Year released: 2010
Duration: 31:11
Tracks: 6
Genre: Black Metal

Rating: 4/5

Review online: September 13, 2011
Reviewed by: Adam McAuley
Readers Rating

Rated 5/5 (100%) (3 Votes)

Bethlehem's music on this album reminded me immediately of what I had heard from the band Shining and this is not surprising considering the vocalist is pulled directly from that outfit. The music displays a warped, atmospheric sound that has a dissonant nature that is appealing in its oddness. The mood is at its highest peak on the excellent tune "Yesterday I Already Died Today", which enraptures with its energetic approach.

The compositions are often strange structures, but never lose the necessary focus on songwriting. The experimental nature of the music means that some moments are better than others and this is certainly the case with this EP. There are ups and downs to the music, but as a whole this is an effective excursion. The music is weird and at times haunting, making for a varied experience on the whole. Still, it isn't a perfect EP. There are moments that drag and stretch out too long, but they are complemented by a number of stellar moments so that the overall product is actually of a generally high standard. I find myself comparing this to the band Enslaved at times as well, because the songs verge towards being progressive at times. This is still an entirely different effort from what that band has produced lately, however, and perhaps contains more raw passion.

As an EP, there is a lot of material here clocking in at over thirty minutes and containing six meaty tracks. A worthy excursion into the dark side is to be found with Stönkfitzchen.

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