Agalloch
The Mantle


5.0
classic

Review

by Jerrad Williams USER (5 Reviews)
October 10th, 2013 | 55 replies


Release Date: 2002 | Tracklist


Both black and folk metal can be particularly daunting sub genres for even the most seasoned of metal listeners to grasp. Agalloch is the perfect example of a band that has the talent and vision to combine both subgenres with numerous influences that you would not typically hear on a metal album or many albums within the spectrum of rock for that matter. The Mantle is a product of both curiosity and experimentation. The album transitions between multiple moods and phases yet never manages to get lost in the process. A timpani and acoustic guitar backed by a droning synthesizer slowly crescendo and build the very foundations of The Mantle. From the introduction into the first true track In The Shadows of our Pale Companions there are not many of the signature elements that hint back to the clichés that black metal bands typically embrace.

The absence of relentless double bass drumming and blast beats are replaced by a slow and steady pace for the majority of the album. The result is even more haunting in comparison. Clean vocals appear alongside a unique heavier style of vocal that is remarkably similar to whispering. The guitars drift from acoustic interludes and passages into explosive climaxes that manage to retain all of the atmosphere heard in the softer sections. The bass guitar instrumentation is also extremely unique. The fact that the bass is audible could be seen as an accomplishment in itself as bassists typically do not play a large role within the realm of black metal. The bass lines rarely if ever mimic the guitars and compliment the songs extremely well. The Mantle also borrows a lot from post-rock when it comes to the near cinematic level of detail placed on atmosphere and structure. The tasteful use of sampling on the track The Hawthorne Passage only adds detail and works surprisingly well.

Agalloch amplified everything that worked on Pale Folklore and embraced a vast selection of fresh elements. The effortless transitions between the numerous ideas and moods is what makes The Mantle such a brilliant and beautiful album. The Mantle has a lot to say and not every proclamation is heard on the first listen. It is a classic within and outside the genre and suit’s the landscapes that Autumn provides with perfection.


user ratings (1807)
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Arnaud
October 10th 2013


186 Comments


Perfect album for this season, indeed

CaptainDooRight
October 10th 2013


30251 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

faith
🍁

NocteDominum
Contributing Reviewer
October 10th 2013


7122 Comments


it's 40 degrees Celsius here, way wrong weather for this majestic artistry

BallsToTheWall
October 10th 2013


44805 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Like a poor man's Crimson/Shadows review.

Digging: Pink Turns Blue - If Two Worlds Kiss

CaptainDooRight
October 10th 2013


30251 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Shadows been mia for dayz

minnashine
October 10th 2013


190 Comments


how is this black metal

Jacquibim
Contributing Reviewer
October 10th 2013


15028 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Album is so good.

Digging: Kassel Jaeger - Toxic Cosmopolitanism

Gwynsalt
October 10th 2013


204 Comments


is it as good as bangerz

Jacquibim
Contributing Reviewer
October 10th 2013


15028 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Not quite.

Gwynsalt
October 10th 2013


204 Comments


I came in like a wrecking ball
I never hit so hard in love
All I wanted was to break your walls
All you ever did was wreck me
Yeah, you, you wreck me

NeroCorleone80
October 10th 2013


29931 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Album fucking rules. I like Pale Folklore more though

SleepingPantheist
October 10th 2013


4 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Great album, I feel like listening to it again and autumn provides a perfect setting. Interesting view on the album.

zaruyache
October 10th 2013


7274 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The leaves are changing and falling from the trees. Temperature aside, it's a great time to review this.

Digging: Sleepytime Gorilla Museum - In Glorious Times

Motiv3
October 10th 2013


8941 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I might jam some Agalloch later.

MO
October 10th 2013


18999 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i like your thinking hollier

Keyblade
October 10th 2013


15234 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Gonna jam Marrow before I go to bed yeaa

Digging: Insides - Euphoria

beefshoes
October 10th 2013


4314 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

This and Pale Folklore are the best Autumn albums. I've been jamming them both on the way to class and the West Virginian mountains mix perfectly.

Digging: Ne Obliviscaris - Citadel

Amphoteric
October 10th 2013


2014 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Empyrium's Songs of Moors and Misty Fields, Ulver's Bergtatt, and Drudkh's Autumn Aurora are also perfect for this time of year.

beefshoes
October 10th 2013


4314 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0 | Sound Off

Most definitely. I want to review Bergtatt but I should probably wait awhile for another 5 review.

Judio!
Contributing Reviewer
October 10th 2013


6487 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Still haven't listened this...I must really be missing out. Good review!

Digging: The Twilight Sad - Fourteen Autumns and Fifteen Winters



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