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Forest of Equilibrium Explicit Lyrics

4.1 out of 5 stars 8 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Audio CD (24 Jun. 2013)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Explicit Lyrics
  • Label: EMI
  • ASIN: B0000241RE
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  Vinyl  |  MP3 Download
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 30,914 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Audio CD
This album is an absolute masterpiece of doom metal, that much-maligned and ridiculed genre where bands try to 'out-slow' each other, often to no effect other than utter tedium. Cathedral, however, mastered it on this album. Whilst in Napalm Death (there couldn't have been much more of a difference between two bands really!) vocalist Lee Dorrian had often stated his love for Black Sabbath, and their first EP 'In Memorium' was almost a tribute record.
Whilst this is no bad thing in and of itself, it was nevertheless heartening to see the band totally surprise everyone on the release of their first full-length album by producing the most remarkable slab of doom ever to see the light of day. Or should that be 'dark of an overcast, rainy evening' - because this is most certainly the most foreboding music you will ever hear. From the deceptively happy intro (never, with the possible exception of Morbid Angel's 'Leading The rats' from their superlative 'Blessed Are The Sick' album, have flutes sounded so uneasy) to the utterly atonal and disharmonic outro of the cheerily-titled 'Reaching Happiness, Touching Pain', Cathedral want us to know that, not only are they unhappy, they are in absolute torment. It is never made clear exactly why this should be so, but the listener is left in no doubt that it is a fact.
Nothing illustrates Cathedral's misery better than Lee Dorrian's 'vocals'. The inverted commas are there for a reason folks, as this isn't so much singing as the guttural outpourings of a man who is actually being physically tortured as he vomits forth a stream of grief-stricken howls. At times it is possible to believe that the man has actually died and had his last breaths committed to vinyl. For most music, obviously, this would be a little bit of a problem.
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Format: Audio CD
It may sound slightly over the top, but 'Forest of Equilibrium' represents all that so-called heavy metal or alternative music should be. For a start the artwork is simply fantastic, suiting the music perfectly. The riffs on the album are so slow and yet so h-e-a-v-y that they they compliment the well thought out lyrics - ultimately insuring that the album works as a complete whole. As for the catharsis that people often claim is the meaning behind 'doom' music, well that's here too - the lyrics from the title track are at once both introspective and suitably mysterious. Also, the way the organ spirals upwards at the end of 'Reaching Happiness, Touching Pain' heightens the sense of release that the song sets claim to.
Alongside Godflesh's 1989 album 'Streetcleaner' and any of the first three albums by Burzum, Forest of Equilibrium is to my mind a true classic not only of 'heavy metal', but music as a whole. If you haven't heard it and like alternative music then I suggest doing so, but steer clear of the albums that followed, where Cathedral started wearing purple flares and dancing in a very odd and funky way.
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By Jane Aland VINE VOICE on 1 Sept. 2005
Format: Audio CD
It's ironic that having been a member of Napalm Death - the 'fastest band of all time', vocalist Lee Dorian would leave to front one of the slowest bands of all time in Cathedral. Teamed up with two guitarists previously from the legendary thrash band Acid Reign, Cathedral would set new records in just how slow and heavy metal could be. Nearly 15 years since it's release the emergence of such mind-numbingly slow bands as Khanate has lessened the extremity of Forest of Equilibrium, which now even seems jaunty at times as it breaks out into mid-pace on tracks like Soul Sacrifice, but at the time of its release in 1991 music this slow was unheard of, and tracks like Serpent Eve can still send the unwary listener into a coma. With dirge-like music and Dorrian's wonderfully over the top gloom-filled lyrics the total effect is rather like being slowly buried alive. Individually all the tracks are excellent, but taken en masse the sheer amount of crushingly heavy dirges make this occasionally feel like an album more to be endured than enjoyed, and while this may be the 'purest' Cathedral album their more varied later work is generally more listenable. Very extreme, very good - but if you've only ever heard latter day groovy-style Cathedral be aware that this is a very different beast...
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Format: Audio CD
With cider in their hearts and cheap nasty resin in their lungs, Cathedral entered the studio in late 1988 to record an album which is slower than the rate at which your garden growths. Late 1988 you say, well indeed, Cathedral being the kings of downtrodden snail-paced doom which they are took around 3 years to vacate their woodland glade in which the resided...and they bumped into Neil from the Young Ones on the way and things got confusing, indeed, Lee thought he was a mirror.

Cathedral in 1991 made the kind of unholy, extraordinarily effed up racket that could only come from men who spent their whole time drinking special brew and getting high (which indeed was Lee's favourite past time till around 1995). Believe me, this is a rather a unsettling listen; the quirky sense of melody, the muddy yet entrancing production and the rather institution worthy vocal performance. Everything here is designed to suffocate...there is no way out of the forest, one must perhaps befriend the troglodyte figures who inhabit it and be prepared to overlook their lack of social graces as they may well be your future husband/wife. Atmosphere, by George, this album has it, performance and production can be rendered rather unnecessary to analyse when they all amount to this audio asphyxiation. Was it the birth of death doom? Well, I've heard of both those words in singular form but the term means nothing to me...and `Forest of Equilibrium' stands on its own, nothing of this sort was going on in the early 1990s, sure their was doom metal but did it make me think of night time forests and giant mushrooms? Great Scott, it did not.

That said, the idea of traditional song writing has not been completely eschewed.
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