Taake
Stridens hus


2.5
average

Review

by ComeToDaddy USER (48 Reviews)
December 29th, 2014 | 27 replies


Release Date: 12/08/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: The finest of materials, sewn together in the poorest fashion.

For all its stylistic diversity, atmosphere has always been paramount in black metal. Whether enveloping you in wintry fury, conjuring images of rolling hills and mythical heroes, or simply assaulting your eardrums with the purest evil the artist is capable of producing - the feelings invoked linger long after the album has ceased playing, and any hooks or melodies have faded from memory. The key to success lies with consistency, a concept Taake's frontman (Hoest) should be well acquainted with given the atmospheric brilliance of his earlier works. The fact that this is the first album since 2005 to feature input from his live band gives rise to hope of a return to form, and yet, Stridens Hus ultimately rests as a continuation on what was found in the disappointing Noregs Vaapen. Where the latter had individually delicious, yet clashing flavours being forced together; here we find ingredients that could blend perfectly becoming segregated, forming a hodgepodge far weaker than the sum of its parts. It’s a step in the right direction, but at the end of the day, great riffs don’t make great albums.

It really is a shame, because there’s something brilliant hidden away here. It sounds as though Taake constructed a solid (albeit short) slab of black metal, and chose to flesh it out to a more respectable length with these disparate elements that destroy the flow and atmosphere. The fierce opener ‘Gamle Norig’ is a deceiving exception, maintaining an icy assault for its full duration, with vicious guitars raging and Hoest’s traditional snarl building towards a malicious blackened-thrash climax. However from this point onwards, we see a peppering of rock and roll riffs, bluesy guitar solos and uplifting melodies that are timed poorly enough to believe this was the debut album from an uncertain composer. These artists are still perfectly capable of painting a vivid portrait of frozen tundras for you to lose yourself in, but strangely opt to include a welcoming log cabin, complete with a fire and a hot meal as a respite from the cold. It forgoes the entire purpose of such an album; one constructed around unrelenting riffing and a pervasive evil aesthetic. While the mental images you form won’t have an offender as gross as the local hillbilly square-dancing to the bluegrass found in their previous release, there are myriads of mismatched elements in this patchwork product that hold it back from being the true return to form we had all hoped for.

There is still the grimy, raw production that defines a certain proportion of the black metal world. The bleak guitar tones are here, the barebones of a suffocating atmosphere are present - but Hoest has developed an unquenchable thirst for variation and refuses to sit still. This constant shifting of gears prevents the mood from setting in; an admirable quality given the right framework, but a poor choice for this particular strain of the infamous genre. Repetition lends itself to stagnation, but to an extent, it's necessary. It's important to set a consistent pace at times, or else you run the risk of making a stylistic mess that seems indecisive, rather than insatiable in its hunt for diversity. Whatever the case may be, the end product has too much time spent writing riffs without enough focus on creating a coherent album; a painfully average black metal release from a man capable of so much more.



Recent reviews by this author
Spectral Voice Eroded Corridors of UnbeingSukekiyo ADORATIO
School of Emotional Engineering School of Emotional EngineeringSpectral Lore Gnosis
Power Glove EP IIAgent Fresco Destrier
user ratings (68)
Chart.
3.4
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
ComeToDaddy
December 29th 2014


1720 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

This is probably the furthest my opinion of an album has differed from the average rating in a review I've written. I enjoyed it when I jammed it in the background, but when I actually knuckled down and listened to it from front to back it became so incoherent. Some great moments scattered throughout, but just not what I'd hoped for. As always, constructive criticism is welcomed and appreciated!

Artuma
December 29th 2014


29655 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

disagreed hard, what your aspect on this seems to be is that its atmosphere doesn't please you but honestly this isn't about atmosphere that much. review is well-written though so have a pos

Digging: Thou - Magus

ComeToDaddy
December 29th 2014


1720 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

It's more about the consistency. If the whole thing was focused on making a fun mishmash of influences like Darkthrone's latest I'd dig it, but it feels so unfocused and strung together

Lethean
December 29th 2014


1487 Comments


i feel it's pretty consistent

Artuma
December 29th 2014


29655 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@daddy i don't see it that way at all, although this definitely isn't as strong as their old stuff

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
December 29th 2014


6673 Comments


pos, really liked this review man. I'll give another read after work and see what input I can give. so far, I'd say this is one of the more concise reads from you. you say what you have to say in a nice word count, and it's an entertaining read throughout imo.

ComeToDaddy
December 29th 2014


1720 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Yeah after my Mors review I wanted to tone things down a bit, so I restructured this one. It's good for my writing, plus I wanted to spend more time on the other one too

Tyrael
December 29th 2014


21112 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

This was rather disappointing :[

Archelirion
December 29th 2014


5569 Comments


Pos'd up! I kinda see what you mean (I think) - there's a section of Orm for example that raised a smile as to how unfitting it seemed (around 2:00). That said, it's a fun listen, made me think Taake are the BTBAM of black metal or something.

cryptside
December 29th 2014


2397 Comments


Pos'd, buddy. Everything looks great in the review, and I got a real feel for where the band went wrong in their composition. Nice work.

VinVal
December 29th 2014


1167 Comments


I really enjoyed this one

adr
December 29th 2014


12000 Comments


yea this one feels like a 3 tbh, no way this is 4-4.5, i mean this is far from Hordalands Doedskvad and Nattestid quality. Good review also.

Artuma
December 29th 2014


29655 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

doedskvad and nattestid are masterpieces so it's pretty hard to beat them agreed. i like this a lot tho

Crysis
Emeritus
December 29th 2014


17351 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Forgot this came out, gotta give it a listen.

forkliftjones
December 29th 2014


758 Comments


same here

ComeToDaddy
December 29th 2014


1720 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

that solo at 2:00 in Orm is so out of place haha. The issue for me is that BTBAM are quirky at their core, whereas Taake tries to make a serious sounding record with those elements being tacked on. Most of the thrashy elements were well integrated though

ComeToDaddy
December 29th 2014


1720 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Agreed hard on Kulde, but it's a bit telling when an artist's best song of the year is a cover

SCREAM!
February 9th 2016


15734 Comments


He'll be playing here in less than 2 weeks. Guess I should check his last 2 already

LampshadePelican
April 30th 2016


108 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

One of the most underrated black metal releases ever. This album is nearly perfect.

Maco097
August 12th 2016


2922 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

No banjo no life.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy