- - - - - -

This Ascension - Sever

This Ascension -  CD Review
CD Info
13 Tracks
English / Latin lyrics

This Ascension, musically, have the Midas touch. I bought Sever Originally because every reviewer on the Net was creaming themselves about it, so when I got it I was expecting something extremely special.

Now, I should get this straight as soon as possible. If I were one of the popeyed rednecks that seem to be the staple audience fodder of shows like Ricki Lake and Springer I'd say this "ain't all that and a bag of chips". Because it's not. It's given scores of wanky reviewers the chance to use words like 'complex' and 'layered' to describe its sound, giving us the impression that they are the ones that REALLY appreciate music and we should sit up and listen like prairie dogs as soon as they start to speak. Well, sod that. One guy even said that This Ascension were a band who weren't afraid to take risks because they use Latin lyrics some of the time. I mean, for God's sake. Do these people ever go out? Do they really think they sound clever? I think I'm going to be sick.

Well, I had a honeymoon period with this album. Which is a good start, because it shows it has an immediate appeal. Still, it's not a bad album. No, no, no. This is, to be fair, quite impressive ethereal stuff – nicely dreamlike and soft in places. The songs can be a little inaccessible at times, but you can't deny that numbers like Fuego Cayendo, Love Lost Years, Forever Shaken and Fatal Dawn are very good after a couple of listens. But the album in its entirety is not amazing. I feel I've been led down the garden path by people saying that Dru's voice is incredible, blah blah and this album is so intense and well crafted. Yeah, that's the case if you live in a shed and your musical knowledge is so underground it's biodegrading. There is a lot of superior stuff out there. Dru does have a good voice, but she has trouble holding pitch on the higher notes. Also, I like female vocalists with very distinctive voices - Anneke, Tarja, Jansen, even Lydia from The Shroud has a wonderful dry sensuality to her voice, but Dru just bores me, and even tying herself up with rope for the album's artwork won't change that.

Sever is an album you have to spend time with. No amount of description can prepare you for This Ascension's sound - it must be heard to be believed. I will admit that certain songs, like those I've mentioned, have got me hooked because they are haunting, and there's something about the chanting backing vocals on a couple of the songs that really does it for me. It's dark, it's deep, it's different. And it is good. It just doesn't deserve to be revered like a god.