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Críticas a Álbuns
Crítica a Álbum :: Obscurity - Obscurity (2012)
2013-02-24 03:49:41 | Hugo Miguel Delgado

I'll have to admit that this is the first time I've heard of this band, but Obscurity has been around since 1997 and their latest album, also named Obscurity, was released on October 2012 by Trollzorn / SMP Records and is already their 6th studio album. This pagan/viking metal band comes from Germany and features Agalaz (vocals), Dornaz and Cortez (guitars), Ziu (bass) and Arganar (drums). Their sound combines pagan/viking metal with some melodic death / gothemburg and even some black metal, so it ends up sounding like if Amon Amarth decided to turn to the dark side every now and then. So, expect a few epic tunes featuring some melodic guitar melodies and/or repetitive mesmerizing melodic patterns, accompanied by harsh / grunting vocals and a few shouted choirs. Also worth of mention is the fact that the songs are in German - which means that I have no clue whatsoever on what are these guys singing about, since I still haven't moved forward from lesson #1 at my homemade German 101 course.

The album kicks off with In Nomine Patris, arguably the best song of the album. The opening guitar riff immediatelly reminds us of Amon Amarth and catches our attention, growing afterwards in intensity, driven mostly by Agalaz's singing and Arganar's pounding drums and embellished by the aforementioned riffs and melodies from Dornaz and Cortez's guitars. The soloing is simple yet quite adequate for the song, I'm glad they went for this kind of approach instead of picking some more flashy but out of context soloing choices. The following track, Obscurity, continues from where the previous one left off, bringing us some more headbanging material and viking choruses. Germanenblut comes third and brings a more brutal approach, nearing a more blackened style with some blast beats and double bass drums throughout the song, similar to what we might find later in other songs such as Blutmondzeit. Most of the remaining songs, such as Strandhogg, Weltenbrand or Ensamvarg (now here's another cool song!), are quite similar in approach to the two opening tracks, while a few others like Fimbulwinter or closing track So Endet Meine Zeit are slightly more independent from that Amon Amarth influence, but alas end up sounding less interesting to our ears.

The album's production is quite solid, all instruments can be heard almost effortlessly, and everything seems to be at the right levels. The songs are catchy enough, particularly the ones where the guitar riffs resemble Amon Amarth the most. A few choruses are also worth of mention - although my german-speaking skills are close to none, it seems clear to me that some of these songs' choruses will certainly call for massive singing and yelling by the audiences, when played live. Musicianship skills overall seem adequate to the songs' needs, and although there's no individual highlight to be made, in particular, the result as a whole works quite well. A few songs are not as memorable as others, and the ones nearing black-metal territory end up sounding a little out of place, but these remarks don't compromise too much the album as a whole.

As way of a conclusion, this album made me wonder why did it take me 6 albums to learn about these guys. This is a really nice album that will surely please every viking / pagan / (harsher)folk / Amon Amarth fan, so give these guys a listen if you don't know them already. If all songs could keep up with In Nomine Patris's level, rating would be higher, but still it's well worth 77 out of 100.

Rating: 77%

Obscurity - album cover
01In Nomine Patris 5:03
02Obscurity 4:28
03Germanenblut 3:53
04Strandhogg 4:35
05Ensamvarg 6:48
06Blutmondzeit 4:32
07Jörmungandr 4:41
08Weltenbrand 4:11
09Fimbulwinter 4:07
10Kein Rückzug 3:43
11So Endet Meine Zeit 5:10
Obscurity - band photo