Arcturus - Arcturian 2LP
Released by Prophecy Productions. Description from the label: Unparalleled in creativity, musicianship and artistic approach since their foundation days, mastermind Steinar "Sverd" Johnsen and his cosmic crew consisting of past and present members of bands like Ulver, Mayhem, Dimmu Borgir, Borknagar and Ved Buens Ende have been dancing their very own tightrope between genius and madness ever since. With each of their releases being an interstellar journey of its own, and always ahead of their time, Arcturus can justifiably be labelled as the epitome of avant-garde metal. "Arcturian" is Arcturus' first studio album in ten years, and the announcement of its release may take many a fan by surprise. But the first spin of the album will turn doubts into sheer bliss. As the title indicates, Arcturus return with their quintessential work. Veined by the band's generic boundless creativity, "Arcturian" is a setting-to-music of both the sublime and beauty of outer space, uniting grandeur and filigree in their inimitable way, yet always being daring and unpredictable, just as the magnificent artwork designed by Costin Chioreanu in close collaboration with the band. With what is doubtlessly their strongest album of the millennium, Arcturus prove once and for all that for them nothing but the sky is the limit! Knut Magne Valle says on the album: "'Arcturian' contains elements from entire Arcturus' history and as a result it is both harder and softer than ever before. We went back to real drums, real strings and 'first take' improvised guitar solos to give it an authenticity and life that not many records tend to have these days. We worked hard to mix the old Arcturus sound into the newer material and the result was: We obtained a more homogeneous, mystic Arcturus sound picture."