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Album Reviews : Be'lakor – The Frail Tide EP

By on February 14, 2008

If somebody were to play this EP to you, without giving you any prior knowledge of the band in question, I can guarantee that “unsigned” and “debut release” are definitely not two things that would enter your mind. Surprisingly, Be’lakor have only been around for a couple of years, are yet to be picked up by a label and “The Frail Tide” is indeed, their debut release.

Everything about this release; the catchy guitar tunes, powerful growling vocals and even the 6 minute piano piece, “Paths”, are dripping with pure excellence. At no stage in the album does it die down to a lull. It’s the type of album that keeps you hooked from the very start. The opening guitar riffs of “Neither Shape Nor Shadow” instantly grab your attention and there is enough variety and change to keep you paying attention so that you don’t miss a thing. “Paths” may be the only track that lets your attention wander and may even get skipped on the first few listens (I’ll admit that I did). However, be warned, it’s definitely a grower and sooner or later you’ll be looking forward to the song as much as any other.

While it wouldn’t be incorrect to simply be lazy and compare the band’s sound to a (less progressive) Opeth, it also wouldn’t give a true indication of the range of music and influences present throughout. It’s largely the atmospheric feel to the music that gives it the similarity to Opeth. The music itself has a very wide variety of influences from riffs with a distinct classic metal catchiness to them (think Iron Maiden but a tad heavier) to the keys which can be similar to Dark Tranquillity at times. Despite that, Be’lakor do have a sound of their own which is great to see from such a young band.

There is very little that could be improved upon. The drum sound isn’t quite up to par with the rest of the production and the keyboards could be louder in quite a few areas, but a perfect sound isn’t to be expected from a debut EP.

If this release is any indication of what’s to come then I foresee big things for Be’lakor in the future and I eagerly await their next release. You can purchase “The Frail Tide” through the bands MySpace. 9/10

Band: Be’lakor
Album: The Frail Tide EP
Year: 2007
Genre: Melodic/Progressive Death Metal
Label: Independant
Origin: Victoria, Australia

Track Listing:
1. Neither Shape Nor Shadow
2. The Desolation Of Ares <– reviewers choice
3. Tre’aste
4. A Natural Apostasy
5. Paths
6. Sanguinary


Mitch Booth is the owner, designer and grand overlord of Metal Obsession. In the few seconds of spare time he has outside of this site, he also hosts a metal radio show over on PBS 106.7fm in Melbourne (Australia) and organises shows under the name Untitled Touring. You should follow him on Twitter.