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Customer Review

on 9 January 2004
As stated in the title, this is Varg's masterpiece mainly due to the minimalist theme which is prevalent through out. What could so easily have become tedious or boring if attempted by 'lesser' people is an album of true vision and at the time in total contrast to what people's perception of 'black metal' was. Varg achieves soundscapes of both raw and primitive 'evil' and yet evocative and truly transcendal passages of music. The intro to the 14 minute title track before the first riff is heard is evidence of this, haunting in its slowly moving an evolving sounds, and yet strikingly simple and 'dreamy'. Repetition of riffs seeks to continually enhance and build an atmosphere, not because Varg is incapcable of progressing songs, but because of an understanding of aesthetics. The following two tracks while also utilising minimalist techniques and being respectively good songs in their own right, ultimately pale when stood against the magnitude and scope of the first song. The 10 minute keyboard track 'Tomhet' which rounds up the album leaves me in a state of ambiguity as to whether it is music, or a lesson in constructing passages of minimalism for the sake of it. Either way, this album represents a true black metal classic of undeniable genius. Whether you love or hate him, worship him or want to kill him, Varg's music remains thus = Essential listening.
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Product Details

4.7 out of 5 stars
21