Review: Craving – Call Of The Sirens
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(This review was written by Bob Genghis Khan)
If Forrest Gump were a metal head, he’d probably compare black metal to a box of chocolates. It’s a genre that spans the gamut between the worst, lo-fi productions in music, all the way to the highest levels of musicianship that exist in metal today. I try not to be too snobby about it. Some of my favorite black metal albums sound like they were recorded by placing the microphones in a dumpster out behind the recording studio. But if we’re being honest, I don’t enjoy that experience as much as when I can actually hear the music. I’m also incredibly impatient. There’s a lot of great bands that I’ve never listened to simply because they decided to put a 5 minute noise track between every song. Sorry, that’s just not my cup of tea either. Look, I respect the stagecraft, atmosphere, and raw production, but only when the band earns it. If you want me to pay attention, at a base level you’ve gotta rip. And if you don’t rip, all the facepaint in the world can’t save you.
As the album goes on, the power metal influences really start to come out. Big group shouts, choruses, and riffs that make you want to ride a horse into battle. Even if you’ve never had any equestrian leanings, it’s hard not to envision a medieval backdrop and mythical beasts while listening to this record. Tracks like “Blood Ov Franconia” and “Gods Don’t Negotiate” really drive the point home. I’d be hard pressed to actually levy any criticism here. The weakest part of the album for me were the final two songs, but they are black metal renditions of pop songs. I’m sure the band was just trying to have some fun with it, but thematically it felt a little disjointed. Other than that, it seems like the band achieved exactly what they set out to do. In that way, I’d argue “Call of the Sirens” is an instant classic. It integrates multiple genres, but never ceases to feel natural in its progression.