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Album Reviews : Persefone – Aathma

By on January 19, 2017


Here we have a case of a band with overwhelmingly lofty ambitions who have made a very good fist of attempting to achieve them, but have possibly just fallen slightly short. At times, anyway.

The intention here is blatantly obvious: to throw everything, including several kitchen sinks, at this album and create an opus of gargantuan proportions. Aathma is an hour plus of mindbending and bombastic progressive death metal, with lashings of soaring melody, proggy and symphonic stylings, high-level musicianship, atmospheric moments (Vacuum is quite beautiful) and whatever else the band could think of at the time. They even channel Cynic during Living Waves. All culminating in the title track, which is a twenty minute, multi-suite epic, rounding out the album.

Not absolutely everything they throw violently at the wall sticks, however. The album suffers from somewhat of a lack of cohesion at times, as if they’ve bitten off slightly more than they can chew. Penultimate track Stillness is Timeless is a case in point. At almost ten minutes itself, the potential was there for this track to be a showstopping stunner, especially after the sweet ambient setup that is Vacuum. However, it lacks a little direction, and comes across like a whole bunch of somewhat disparate musical ideas put together, rather than a completely smooth, seamless and connected whole. Viewed in isolation, the ideas are very strong, but altogether it doesn’t quite work.

Anyway, much esteem and honor to this band, who hail from the tiny European country of Andorra which has a population of about what Burnie is Tasmania has, for having such immense aspirations for their music and trying so hard to attain them. Aside from some of the issues cited above (which many will probably disagree with anyway), this is a very strong prog-death album and well worth an hour of your time to check out.

Band: Persefone
Album: Aathma
Year: 2017
Genre: Progressive Metal
Label: Vicisolum Productions
Origin: Andorra


Rod Whitfield is a Melbourne-based writer and retired musician who has been writing about music since 1995. He has worked for Team Rock, Beat Magazine,, Heavy Mag, Mixdown, The Metal Forge, Metal Obsession and many others. He has written and published his memoirs of his life and times in the music biz, and also writes books, screenplays, short stories, blogs and more.