"some music was meant to stay underground..."

Old Corpse Road - "The Echoes of Tales Once Told" (Promo CD)

Old Corpse Road - "The Echoes of Tales Once Told" Promo CD cover image

"The Echoes of Tales Once Told" track listing:

1. Old Corpse Road
2. The Wild Hunt
3. The Oakmen of Naddle Forest

Reviewed by on June 30, 2009

"Medieval culture is a large part of the band, but don't be afraid to give it a listen for the black metal of it all."

Going down the Old Corpse Road, you'll see beautiful scenery of tall trees, small villages of storytelling trolls, and huge castles with knights practicing their sword fighting. Not liking all this fantasy stuff? That's fine because although these images are presented through Old Corpse Road's debut album "The Echoes of Tales Once Told," the music is solid. The music in question is melodic black metal that tries to connect with an older time as well as with nature. Some parts of the album are spoken narratives to prove that Old Corpse Road loves their folklore traditions. Medieval culture is a large part of the band, but don't be afraid to give it a listen for the black metal of it all.

The album begins with keyboards and works its way into black metal. The tempo is paced perfectly, which wouldn't be something to write about unless it was superb. The drums play a syncopated rhythm between the perfect time and double bass frenzy. The guitars never play any fancy shreds, but they do play in time with the keyboards which makes those instruments stick out from the framework of the music. The vocals are that of a troll. It's a high-pitched growl or squeal that fits well into the theme of the dark ages. The electric music blends into acoustic on a few occasions which blasts back into black with no warning. No huge surprises here, but it is very well played music.

Old Corpse Road made their debut album flawless production-wise as the quality is great. The music is tight and interesting but may not be called incredible. The spoken narrative is exhilarating at first, as if you were one of the soldiers preparing for battle, but it does lose its steam after a while. Eventually you’ll want to yell "Let's fight already!" as it continues. "The Echoes of Tales Once Told" gives me hope that the next CD we receive from Old Corpse Road will be a masterpiece.

Highs: Very good black metal with a medeival theme.

Lows: Spoken narrative and acoustic pieces make the album lose momentum.

Bottom line: A good symphonic black metal sound, but no wow-worthy moments.

Rated 3.0 out of 5 skulls
3.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)