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Samael - Ceremony of Opposites

1994 Century Media Records :: Reviewed by rofreason on 2005-07-08

Cracking things wide open with the excellent Black Trip, Samael have discovered how to successfully incorporate mood and emotion into dark, dark music. More akin to death goth than pure metal, I bet these guys never caught in white. Pacing of the album is pretty much slow to mid, an intentional mood created here for our listening enjoyment. Actually, due to the feel, this album took a few listens for me to warm to it, discovering the interwoven keyboard passages somewhere around spin 5. Being low in the mix, the symphonic quality is there, but not as prevalent as in other "black metal" works. Drumming appeared fairly normal as well, but Xy has an interesting style, somewhat bouncy. Time is kept, but weird things are done with the rhythms. Not quite as adventurous as Passage, but a nice spin on a sometimes stagnant genre, and considered a true classic to many listeners. Samael continue to push the limits given to them, and in the end, we get some pretty cool music to keep our ears busy. One of the best albums to succeed in the art of aural envelopment.