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Arctic Sleep - Arbors & Passage Of Gaia (Reissue) Award winner

Arctic Sleep
Arbors & Passage Of Gaia (Reissue)
by JOGANEGAR at 21 July 2017, 7:45 AM

ARCTIC SLEEP is currently a one-man band hailing from Milwaukee, in the United States if America; their style is as unique as the effort behind this reissue of two of their previously released albums this year. Two questions arose in my psyche after listening to these two records, who is the artist behind this thorough and conscientious labor of creativity? And why isn’t there a higher number for grading song writing in the metal temple reviewing scale? The symphonic intro is an invitation to carry on with the quest of ARCTIC SLEEP through both records reissued this year but originally released in 2012, As the band proclaims itself in its digital biography, their main drive is slow-paced, melodic, spacious soundscapes that dramatically drift between quiet, beautiful stargazing and infinite, hypnotic loudness. Beautifully and accurately said and displayed furthermore with Passage of Gaia, the second album reissued in this edition released two years later.

In Arbors, the melancholic and cadence embodied first part of acoustic guitars in “Valley of Poison” is undoubtedly the point entwined between the branches of the knowledge of trees acquired over millions of years of evolution observed at a precise period to form this ten-long track bower of musical creative flow. On the other hand, or on the other album, to be more precise, “Green Dragon” plays along perfectly with the whole concept of "Passage of Gaia," and flows like a river to the tune of different genres of Rock and Metal without ever losing its pace or the motion that is kept along with the low tuning that goes from Doom and Stoner to Progressive Rock all while maintaining a Gothic atmosphere to it with the dissonant tempo variations and the background female voice.

If I could be as bold as to have a complaint as a mere mortal listening to an outstanding effort in the field of music writing, music performance and audio recording, it just may be that some moments within some songs might seem to manage too many elements, turning them overwhelming, in lack of a better word, to the ears of a humble listener like myself, maybe production could polish the sound over the edges a little more, or maybe that’s how it was Intended to be from the beginning anyway, in which case my complaint gets completely nullified; Either way, this record is worthy of becoming memorable for all that it represents and the most notorious example of it is its reissue five and three years later. Creativity and Inspiration are the two words that best describe to me what both these records represent.  If only these few words can make fair justice of this extraordinary effort in the field of music and if fortune finds me worthy enough maybe, just maybe I could witness a live performance of some of these tracks, specially “Passage of Gaia” in an actual concert I could venture to call myself a lucky man. A one of a Kind record in a reissue to be kept as a part of Metal history and the example of how there are no boundaries to artistic creation and determination as a natural impulse of talent in any field.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 9
Memorability: 10
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Avenue of the Giants
2. Geneva
3. Black Moth
4. Altena’s Pond
5. Pine Mountain
6. Timber
7. Valley of Poison
8. Sea of Origins
9. Wolf Nature
10. Release the River
11. The Staircase
12. Terra Vindicta
13. Green Dragon
14. Hyperion
15. Antipode
16. Passage of Gaia
17. Solar Lament
18. Destroy the Urn
Keith D- Everything
Record Label: The Church Within Records


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