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SACRED REICH - review
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OKULAR
OKULAR
Sexforce
(Regenerative Productions)
60:17min

I was blown away when I first heard this Norwegian band's first release "Probiotic", a progressive piece of brutal Death Metal interlaced with sweeping melodies and grandiose moments, without it becoming too much or strayed of the initial path. That together with the quite organic production made the album work in a whole, and made me a happy camper. The Norwegians are now ready with their second assault, an album I've used a lot time to listen to and get into. I think what have been the main reason for me having a hard time to get into the music, this time around, is the overpowered and quite hard sound, like the mix have been mastered at full volume. I really miss some calm moments to catch my breath and rest my ears. I really liked the calm and quite flowing mix on "Probiotic", which I don't recall as overpowering as on this release. Musically the lads are continuing as they left it on "Probiotic". Brutal and powerful, yet melodic and progressive Death Metal. They are taking it a step further this time around compared to the first album, almost always a good mix between brutality and melodic supremacy, there are also a couple of quite OPETH inspired calmed down pieces with guitar strumming and clean singing, I don't really catch the context here. If you were into the first offering from OKULAR you have to check this release out, as there are plenty of great moments and brilliant technical musicianship throughout the hour it lasts. I just find the first release more whole with a better and more coherent flow, and soul on top of it all. There are simply too many things going on at once, a bit too often during the 13 tracks on "Sexforce", just take 'Birth Through Loss' where all the layers nearing the end is killing my ears and mind. If just the music was as strong as the great conceptual lyrics and artwork, which really is hitting it off. But well, it is an extremely tough and difficult task to make a pure conceptual album where all parts falls into place, and it seems like OKULAR have tried to fit the music into the concept, a bit too hard, instead of letting it flow, as they already have shown they can do, quite perfectly. www.okularmetal.com

Anders Peter Jørgensen

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