I have accumulated many personal reviews while listening to albums. My reviewing style is non-conventional and was only intended for myself. Sometimes I will only use one sentence to describe an album if I feel that is all that's required. Other times I will review an album while I'm still listening to it, leading to a song-by-song review of the album (bringing the size of the review to nearly dissertation-level). There are times when I will even come back to a review to add information that I didn't know when originally writing the review. The point is that I won't edit my reviews to make them more readable or conventional. My reviews are always a direct result of what I was feeling when I wrote them and I want to let that feeling come through.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Dimmu Borgir - Abrahadabra [2010]

AWESOME intro track, if the rest of the album doesn't live up to this, I'll be pissed. And we're off to a really shitty start in "Born Treacherous". The production isn't very heavy at all, pretty disappointing; the guitars are much more buried than previously and they also fell a bit unbalanced. "Gateways" starts out much more promising, but then takes the opposite route of "Born Treacherous" and gets a bit crappy and the melodic harmonized guitars can go right into a closet and fuck themselves. It gets really catchy and beautiful towards the end, though; shame it wasn't that good all the way through. Finally, a decent song can be found in "Ritualist". I suppose I should be a little more forgiving since this is a very different style for Dimmu. The reduced guitars are the price they pay for trying to make the orchestra stand out more. I like the addition of the choir, though, and the orchestra is much more heavily integrated into the songs than previously. Dimmu was never a band that would put out a grind-fest album, but this is even less so than normal. Much of the excitement in this album comes in short spurts and it feels like there are way too many filler riffs thrown in the mix. This is definitely a step away from the Black Metal that I would expect Dimmu to put out. All the songs have the same problem of having very unexciting riffs that drag the listener down in between really good and catchy sections. "Dimmu Borgir" sounds identical to Nightwish's style of writing. So, the bite of Black Metal is completely gone, it's not brutal in the slightest, the guitars are too wussy, and there are way too many crappy riffs. Even so, props for trying to change things up, the orchestra and choir are extremely effective, and the riffs that are good are great. If I can approach this album as if it didn't come from Dimmu and as a Gothic Metal album with no pretentions to Black Metal, this would be a decent album (probably get a score of 7). However, I just can't ignore the fact that this is a large disappointment coming from Dimmu.

Rating: 6


All ratings are out of 10. Rating may not be a whole number.

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