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Aeon Aphelion - "Aeon Aphelion" (CD/EP)

Aeon Aphelion - "Aeon Aphelion" CD/EP cover image

"Aeon Aphelion" track listing:

1. Urn for the Ashes of Gods
2. Scythe and Straw
3. Embraced in Wings
4. Wombstone
5. Of the Horned Wolves

Reviewed by on March 3, 2011

"Considering this is only an EP and their first foray with material, it should be interesting to see what this Greek quintet puts out in the future with better production and songwriting under their belt."

Aeon Aphelion trace their inception back to 2005, when guitarist George Xenikoudakis and vocalist Fanis Markonis of Dreamscape decided to re-emerge with a new project. Now a half decade and a few more members later, Aeon Aphelion has their self-produced debut EP out for contending.

Tagged under the banner of doom metal, that is a sobriquet that's not exactly fitting for this band. Aeon Aphelion has a sound that is raw, retro and occasionally ventures into doom territory. "Embraced in Wings" is probably the most doom sounding tune on their five song EP. It is well written, embarking on ominous leads complemented by lower vocals that suit the singer, even if sometimes they get drowned out by the minimalist production. The melodies and guitar segments are arguably the most sophisticated and stand out on this song in particular, giving it a mournful feeling in a Paradise Lost sort of way.

The rest of the EP is hit or miss, possibly what one can expect from a starting band with a low production budget. "Wombstone" is one of a couple of tracks showcasing female vocalist Eri Manoura, a novel addition to a sludgier sounding band. The vocal interplay is a nice touch, but the track keeps the same basic rhythm throughout the whole song, occasionally building in energy.

The other tracks keep it basic as well - too basic, only briefly venturing out of safe territory. "Scythe and Straw" suffers from being too simplistic in structure, the weak production further causing the drumming to sound lackluster as well. Another flaw is some of Markonis' singing. In a track such as "Urn for the Ashes of Gods," he would have done better adhering to the lower range that he does in half the songs. When he gets up in key, it sounds as if he is really straining his pipes. Aside from that, the deftly-crafted interludes of bass and rhythm guitar are fairly good.

Considering this is only an EP and their first foray with material, it should be interesting to see what this Greek quintet puts out in the future with better production and songwriting under their belt.

Highs: Greek retro metal with occasional female vocals.

Lows: Simplistic material and underwhelming production.

Bottom line: A different take on the sludge metal sound.

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)