|Review: Agalloch - Pale Folklore|
Label: The End Records
Year released: 1999
Genre: Folk Metal
Review online: September 1, 2005
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Rated 3.73/5 (74.55%) (55 Votes)
This was the much-lauded debut for Agalloch, and a lot of people shit themselves over it, not only because it is awesome, but because no one had ever heard anything like it before. Agalloch mixed folk, Black Metal, Doom, Ambient and acoustic music together and made something new, which lots of bands have imitated. But it's not really possible to imitate Agalloch without sounding like a total ripoff.
I have to come down and say this is not quite as good as the masterful "The Mantle". "Pale Folklore" is gloomy, individual, and majestic, but also a bit dull here and there. There are some awesome songs here, like the lovely instrumental "The Misshapen Steed", or the haunting "Dead Winter Days", but nothing here quiiiite matches the magisterial grandeur of "In The Shadow Of Our Pale Companion", or "And The Great Cold Death Of The Earth". Agalloch were, and are, a singular band who did the almost impossible in creating a wholly new sound of their own, and the only reason I rate this below a 5 is because it is not quite as good as it could be, but that's only a hair of difference. Let me say that if you have never heard this band, you are missing out. Even if you came to hate them, you need to hear one of the most important metal albums ever made. "Pale Folklore" is a landmark.
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