The Angry Scotsman
Let me first say this album blows my mind! Lykathea Aflame, (now just Lykathea) was introduced to me by my brother because of how obscure they were. We could not find them even in our always reliable local music store. However, we grew to love "Elvenefris" This album is the epitome of Progressive Metal. In an instant it shifts from soft, slow melodies with clean guitar work to brutal death metal. Every song on this album will take you to both extremes, several times.
The guitar work on this album is best described as organized chaos. It never does the same thing for more than 20 seconds at a time. Throughout any song you will hear death metal-esque tremolo picking, crushing riffs, (and they are always different!), eastern influences, and very technical licks.
The drumming on "Elvenefris" is truly astounding. While there are plenty of thrash beats, double bass, and mind numbingly fast blast beats, there are also very technical beats. There is constant use of double bass, with complex ride/snare patterns over it. The drumming is very fill heavy, and just like the guitar work it is always changing. On the flip of a switch Tomas Corn alternates from precision snare and bass drumming to blast beats, then to a jazzy interlude, and back to pounding blast beats. That is what amazes me most, his technicality on the album as well as his stop and go skills.
Every song is different, and each is an indescribable experience of technicality. Despite the extreme metal feel to the album, there is the 11:13 long "Walking in the Garden of Ma'at" which is entirely consistent of bird chirping and "nature" sounds.
If there is one downside to this album, it has to be the vocals. I am a seasoned veteran of metal, and death metal, but even I have some difficulty with the vocals on this album. I am not sure how to describe them..."pig squeal" vocals, seem the best way to go, (to me the vocals often just sound like "bree"). It should be noted the vocals often fit the music very well, but they can be tough to swallow. Luckilly, the vocals are not used heavily, or else I might have to give this album a lower rating. However, spoken word is also used frequently and if you are a fan, you will get past the vocals.
This is one of the best metal albums, ever. Quite a claim given its obscurity and extremity, but I stand by it. Some of the most extreme, technical, and progressive metal there is. The musicianship on this album is simply brilliant. A masterpiece of metal.