Everything that makes prog fans drool, and prog haters reach for the off button is present on this album, from the Latin song names, through the incredibly dense concept, to the music which changes time signatures almost as often as it changes style.
On their previous releases, Pain Of Salvation has been nearly unanimously classified as simply a progressive metal band, and rapidly developed a large following among fans of the genre. With this album though, which includes elements of folk, rock, metal, crazy amounts of effects, and sounds that simply sound as if they came from another planet, Pain Of Salvation took the step forward away from stereotype, and towards far greater respect.
The general idea though is this; God creates humanity in order to be able to understand himself, having gone through something of an existential crisis on the first song. Things immediately start going downhill from this point, with mankind rapidly seeking to take over everything it approaches, while characters are introduced who reflect all that is worst about materialistic popular culture. Forgetting their origins, God despairs of them, saying that he has no choice but to leave them to their own devices.
Of course, the fact that he created mankind to understand himself, and then mankind greatly disappointed him, reflects on the role of God, as portrayed on this album. Opening track Animae Partus is a purely spoken word piece, with distorted voices both male and female representing God wondering how and when he was created. Deus Nova contains keyboards and distorted guitars playing under a mechanical voice counting down years and the numbers of people in the world at each of these years.
The music for this song is very beautiful, and borderline medieval in nature, thanks to flutes and percussion that adds more layers to the music, allowing the building of a real atmosphere.
Both very relaxing and beautiful, this is one of the easiest songs to get into on the album, with the climax where other instruments enter the music being even more remarkable. Lilium Cruentus Deus Nova is definitely the angriest song so far, and reflects the fact that Pain Of Salvation has their influences firmly rooted in metal over any other genre.
The drumming is clearly to the fore here, along with a chorus that is rapped more than anything over very punchy guitar riffing. As with a lot of progressive music, voices in the background with spoken word interludes add even more drama to the song, which makes it one of the most majestic on the album. After the anger of this song comes a chant, with deep voices pleading with the lord to help them over the sparsest of acoustic guitars which drifts along, never Album) leading the song.
Dea Pecuniae serves as the centre point of the album in the eyes of many fans, weighing in at over 10 minutes long, and has a funk influenced intro leading into a slow, moody instrumental section while vocal interplay continues between Mr. Money and Miss Mediocrity over more vocals about his wealth.
Something that should be noted about this album is the quality throughout of the lyrics. While a Album) of progressive music relies on instrumental interludes, the lyrics on this album are undeniably the most important part of the music, including savage attacks on modern life.
The song also contains Mr Money looking at his isolation over dissident keyboards before the return of his self-glorification set over sheer musical jubilation. Vocari Dei is a simple instrumental with spoken vocals from many people reflecting on their relationship with God, in the form of answerphone messages left for him. With Diffidentiathe drama returns in full force. The juxtaposition of the violent destructiveness of humanity and the simple elegance of God is a poignant one, and as the song continues to build, with string sections, soaring guitars and pure bitterness all being in the mix, it seems as if pure aural drama is coming out of your speakers.
Nihil Morari is hugely introspective with another brilliant string section allowing more time for reflection after the majesty of the previous song. Reflections on what humanity has done, and how they have now run out of resources dominate the lyrics, before more massive riffing breaks in after about 2 minutes. As the music enters what sounds like a realm of pure chaos, a final countdown of the growth of mankind begins, culminating in 9 billion people by the year The implication is clear; some great disaster has struck humanity, ending life as we know it today.
Omni then begins, with what sounds like news anchors discussing the horrific tragedy of what has happened to humanity over a funereal organ. This becomes continually more discordant while mourning voices pray for some sort of intervention, now that the worst has happened. Iter Impius is a very confused song, as you can imagine, with lush piano harmonies belying the content of the song, which is dazed, hurt and horrified. After previously talking about how all he needed was himself to prosper, Mr Money now seems to see that he is truly alone, and suddenly there is nothing he can do about it.
At this point though the album becomes still more complex. This line leads into heavily syncopated drumming over an eerie sounding choir, making the music suddenly uncomfortable, as if pondering this latest development.
Right by the mashed potato. This is not an album which you should get as an introduction to progressive music. This is not an album which you should get immediately after getting into progressive music. What it is though is not so much an album as a philosophy on life set to music.
While that may sound pretentious, this CD refers to themes which people think of all the time, but yet remains vague enough to allow any listener to interpret it. The ending could mean many things; humanity rebuilds itself in the form that God wished, humanity rebuilds only to fail again, or even that humanity is rebuilt, only in the role of Gods ourselves.
Rank: for Their first album that divided fans and critics JDubb 5 An engaging treatise or perhaps a warning on the rise and fall of mankind Jazzmaster 3. Tweet Recent reviews by this author. Guns N' Roses Appetite for Destruction. Savage Garden Affirmation. Tool 10, Her Voices - Pain Of Salvation - The Perfect Element: Part I (CD, Days. Scott Walker Tilt. OmairSh 4. Ending Themes. Falling Home. Road Salt One. On 48 Music Lists. Add a Comment. EdwardTheGreat April 25th 57 Comments.
Happymeal April 26th Comments. Zmev May 9th Comments. Dancin' Man May 9th Comments. In The Flesh 3. Ashes 4. Morning On Earth 5. Idioglossia 6. Her Voices 7. Dedication 8. King Of Loss 9. Reconciliation Song For The Innocent Falling The Perfect Element. Used "I am the unclean The black drop at the bottom of your cup You'd better drink or throw me up 'Cause I am on your lip and tongue God I'm not yours as much as you are mine So let me in to be your lung Just breathe me deep and take another sip So still A taste so sweet but so bitter the kill Still on your lip You are so close I'll let you come Between my legs you are closer death than sun And I'm not your daughter as much as you're my son I'll let you come In my mouth on your lip So ready and thirsty for the next sip You let me in, I let you come I'd never let you down You let me win, I let you drown!
Who am I to stand in your way? Go ahead; swallow me down! I'll have no problems finding myself out When you've gone down When your all cracked and wound. Every beat of the hammer Every blood stricken street: A way to trade off heat. Passing the open stores Hiding her dirty sores Seeking asylum among freaks and whores What wouldn't she give to be in a society Not learning the eyes to be closed but to see Now she bites the words "Never" She kicks the ground "Never" Swallows her tears "Never will I go back" She hits the walls "Leave me!
Ashes You claim I don't know you, but I know you well I read in those ash eyes we've been through hell I've walked with the weakest just to feel strong You've given your body just to belong Let's burn together Let's burn together This pain will never end These scars will Album) mend I taste your sorrow and you taste my pain Drawn to each other for every stain Licking the layers of soot from your skin Your tears work my crust to let yourself in Touching you harder Touching you harder now As we walk through the ashes I whisper your name A taste of pain to cling to As we walk through the ashes You whisper my name Who's the one with the sickest mind This pain will never end Our scars will never mend Cleansing sweat We are just using each other Too depraved to stay alive But too young to die And we hurt Thus we hurt Scrubbing it harder Too late to back out now Scrubbing it even harder As these two broken barren desolate disordered words collide As we walk through the ashes I whisper your name A taste of pain to cling to As we walk through the ashes You whisper my name Who's the one with the sickest mind This pain will never end These scars will never mend Damn this dirty bed Damn this dirty head 4.
Morning On Earth For as long as I can remember I have wanted to silence every beating heart, Every sound of breathing. Idioglossia It all comes back to me Face to the floor Heart in my mouth My forehead hits the pavement Again - numb - again Sharing this humility A circle of humanity Momentarily black in me Immomentarily black So black Memory leave me be Close that eye leave love blind When Album) is preceded By an outlet that is needed We forget all but the circle As soon as the ends have met As soon as the ends have met I scratch the surface and see Someone better than me Where did I suffer that loss?
What was taken from me? As you walk through the ashes Remember my name As you walk through the ashes As you walk through the ashes Remember that shame Whisper my name This blood proves me right In that the last move is all that Counts if the beasts must bite Vow to the floor Oath to the taste of dust In my mouth - never! I bite the words - never again! Will I let anyone else finish I'll be the end of every way Memory let it die left behind Leave me blind Kneeling in whirlpools Of pink champagne Celebrating the bravery of my pain Something broke And no water could ever wash The anger from that first stain I scratched the surface to find Someone wicked and blind Where did it come to that end?
Why can't these scars ever mend? I have swallowed all these tears Thought they'd be gone After all these years Now this heart is waking up With a new hunger For my own blood As I search through the ashes For someone to blame I'm afraid to see my face As I walk through the ashes I whisper your name Meeting you have forced me To meet myself It all comes back to me Face to the ground Heart in their mouth Foreheads hit the pavement Again - numb - again Sharing my hostility A streetful of insanity This is payback for every Tear in me, hole in me Black in me - black!
Memory history agony Let me see that hideous Idioglossia that formed me Despite all these words Not one could express What I had inside Living was to hide For every time you froze me out For every punch every shout For not believing in me For your stupidity For stealing what could have been Me It all comes back to you Is this all I am? Her Voices Looking at you I see her face Through all these years, just waiting It all catches up to you when you slow down I'm back in that yard, tasting that shame Of pushing her down, Of kids and her games Am I still paying debts to recover Life?
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