Palace Of Worms - The Forgotten
This is not a new release,to begin with. In fact, "The Forgotten" was released back in 2009.
But since I was given this disc,and taking under consideration that this is an album that clearly deserves a mention,I decided to give it a try and actually do a review about it.Palace Of Worms is a one-man project hailing from the US.To be even more precise,I should also state that the sole entity behind this moniker is Balan,who operates in San Francisco,California.In general,USBM has always been a weird case,balancing in between plain genious and hideous parody.Even more so,the fact alone that this is a one man band,inevitably brings to mind other similar efforts by US local one-man projects,such as Leviathan,Xasthur,Judas Iscariot,I Shalt Become,Striborg,to name but a few.While others incorporate,or even dismiss these projects,by simply labelling them as "bedroom black metal",few can deny that some of these artists/projects are indeed talented,and also capable of delivering grandiose,passionate works.
Palace of Worms bears some similarities to some of these projects,it is impossible though to dismiss him as being a part of an imaginary bedroom black metal wave,or something..Firstly,because the sound delivery here is more than worthwile,making it possible for the listener to easily dwelve on their songs,as each instrument is heard clearly,a task that is achieved without compromising the underground,raw sense of their material.After all,this is a black metal recording,there should be aggression present,right?In this case,I could go as far as detecting a flow of emotions emanating freely against each other:anger,bitterness,harmony,allured with a unique perception of melody.Genre-wise speaking,"The Forgotten" stands out as a mellodic black metal jewell.Experiencing this as a whole,what remains is a Burzum-esque taste.Palace Of Worms though revel in different realms than that of their norwegian peers:there is a warm sense,apparent from beginning to end of this specific recording.Something that certainly comes as a huge difference if compared to the frozen,icy walls of sound that Burzum usually explores,for example.There also some traces of Leviathan here,along with some more classic metal elements(strangely so,some guitar parts remind of Iron Maiden,and that obviously is a healthy influence).Vocals,or should I say screams,are delivered with confidence and power,while keyboards play a key role into forming Palace Of Worms' musical output.Tempos shift from mid paced to hyper-speedblast-beats,and vice versa.Thus,Balan manages to maintain the interest going on for the entirety of this recording.And that should be regarded as quite an achievement,given the fact that this is a long cd,contrived of 7 tracks,lasting roughly about 58 minutes.An honourable mention should be made on Balan's guitar riffs,as he possesses the capacity to compose catchy,sharp.relentless phrases,that in the end,compliment his skill the most..No need to discover highlights,since this material works better as a whole.So,if you are willing to give this a shot,you should prepare yourselves for almost an hour of aggravated,mind-altering,listening pleasure.Since then,after this debut release that is,Palace Of Worms have only released a limited cassette("Lifting The Veil").
While anxiously waiting on Balan's sophomore full length effort,'The Forgotten" could be seen as a nice place to convey an introduction to Balan's sound abilities.An artist/band to watch,for sure.
1)Far From The Light
3)As I Slumber Amongst The Cold Throughtless Stars
6)Rite Of Blood
7)Fallow Earth Eternal
7/10 Isabelle S.