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Dark Fortress: Eidolon

German black metal is alive and well, thanks to a band like Dark Fortress, whose latest CD Eidolon (their second release for Century Media, and fourth overall), is a smoldering collection of brutal extreme metal with a melodic & symphonic edge. Most folks might not be too familiar with the band, who ironically have been around since the early 1990's but are only now starting to get international exposure. Part of this could be due to guitarist V. Santura gaining the second guitarist spot on the recent Celtic Frost reunion tour (ahhh, so that's where you heard the name Dark Fortress before...), but certainly the music speaks for itself, and with Century Media behind them, the band should start to really make waves on the black metal scene. Stylistically, these guys are not too far from vintage Dimmu Borgir, Emperor, Naglfar, Satyricon, Old Man's Child, Dissection, and perhaps a little bit of Dark Funeral and Marduk, however, unlike those last two bands I mentioned, Dark Fortress uses a fair amount of symphonic keyboards from time to time, and the music is pretty melodic despite its brutal nature.

New singer Morean came up with the concept for Eidolon, based on a Greek idea of an astral double of a living being, or 'mirror' so to speak. The lyrics here describe a magic mirror ritual that requires a person to be in a trance, and the surface of the mirror acts as a gateway to enter a new dimension. Not your typical black metal fare to say the least, but it really works here. Expect plenty of rampaging blast beats and crushing tremelo picked guitar riffs, with Morean's vocals ranging from tortured screams, to evil growls, to ungodly shrieks. To further the Celtic Frost connection, Tom Gabriel Fischer lends guest vocals to the dramatic "Baphomet", just one of many reason to check out this thriller of a CD. While some of the songs offer up memorable melodies and atmospheric keyboards, there's plenty of maniacal black metal, such as "The Unflesh", "Edge of Night", "No Longer Human" (love the spacey synths playing against Morean's devillish moans and battering blast beats), and the epic "Antiversum".

If you've never really had the chance to experience Dark Fortress before, and you are a black metal fan who doesn't mind a little symphonic element in your favorite extreme genre, chances are you'll embrace Eidolon pretty quickly and instantly go out in search of their back catalog.

Track Listing
1. The Silver Gate 6:50
2. Cohorror 5:37
3. Baphomet 6:24
4. The Unflesh 5:08
5. Analepsy 6:01
6. Edge of Night 3:56
7. No Longer Human 6:22
8. Catacrusis 4:33
9. Antiversum 7:22

Added: March 4th 2008
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 3169
Language: english

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