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Altar Of Oblivion – Grand Gesture Of Defiance

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One of the biggest surprises of 2009 was Denmarks Altar Of Oblivion. From out of the blue there was this really swinging doom/heavy metal outfit that sprung out with their fresh mix of both genres, well-sounding up-beat rock and outstanding vocal work. After their amazing debut ‘Sinews Of Anguish’ they are now back with its follow-up ‘Grand Gesture of Defiance’. It can honestly be said that the heavy/doom metal blend hasn’t spawned many interesting bands the last, say, ten years. Both genres on their own seem to have worn out anyway. But it solely for bands like these that I still keep an eye on the genres for I would’ve hated it to have missed this out. Their sublime epic heavy metal blends just perfectly with the more rocking kind of doom, don’t think Saint Vitus or Pentagram. Altar of Oblivion takes it a tad faster and much more epic has more in common with early Ozzy Osbourne, Lamented Souls, Count Raven, Solstice and Doomsword. Most attracting element of their sound is their vocalist Mik Mentor who finds the perfect vocal balance between older Danzig, Wall of Sleep, Doomsword and Volbeat: overly operatic, epic and above all soulful. All has just been perfectly blend together, resulting in a very organic analog production that fits their 80’s sound without ever sounding dated. Definitely a must-buy for fans of the aforementioned bands and the genres in general. And… If Volbeat would have real balls they should take these fellow countrymen out on tour and I am sure the ‘kids’ will eat them right up. (Felix)