EDGE OF SANITY — Purgatory Afterglow (review)

EDGE OF SANITY — Purgatory Afterglow album cover Album · 1994 · Melodic Death Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
J-Man
Velvet Dreams

The fourth album from Edge of Sanity, called Purgatory Afterglow is really superb, and is a favorite of mine in their discography. This album shows the band redefining their sound, and going for a more melodic and progressive style. While they still kept their firm death metal sound, this shows a more progressive side of the band that would soon be fully unleashed on the following album, Crimson.

Purgatory Afterglow is a step forward from Edge of Sanity's previous three albums for various reasons. First of all, this album is much more consistent and memorable. Almost every song on this album is filled with memorable melodies and riffs, which is rare for most death metal albums. This album also features more complex and intelligent arrangements and compositions. The variation between the tracks really makes for a great album. In this album you can hear many death metal influences (obviously), as well as goth-rock (on songs like "Blood-Colored" and "Black Tears"), and even neo-progressive rock (most notably on "Twilight"). The eclecticism on this album is really admirable.

In terms of progressiveness, I have no hesitation in calling this album progressive death metal. I don't think it's as "progressive" as bands like Opeth, but I think the overall eclecticism and progressive rock influences in the music make for a rather progressive album. Don't go into this album expecting progressive metal like Dream Theater or Pain of Salvation, though. This album is different, and is very firmly rooted in the Swedish death metal scene.

My favorite song on the album is surely the epic opener, "Twilight". The generous use of synths, the surprisingly beautiful melodies, and the crushing metal riffs makes an excellent song. "Velvet Dreams" is another favorite of mine; that riff is just killer! The goth rock-tinged "Black Tears" is highly enjoyable as well, and I really enjoy the heavy death metal tune "Of Darksome Origin" as well. Every song is great and interesting in its own way, though.

Conclusion:

Purgatory Afterglow is an excellent album from Edge of Sanity, and is one of my favorites in their discography. If you're at all interested in progressive death metal, this is an essential release, and worthy of a big 4 star rating. Keep in mind, you've got to have a background in death metal to enjoy this album, though. If you're not interested in heavy music, this probably isn't for you. However, if you're interested in Edge of Sanity, this should be one of the first purchases you make after their masterpiece, Crimson. Highly Recommended!
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