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Cult of Luna - Cult Of Luna CD (album) cover

CULT OF LUNA

Cult of Luna

Experimental/Post Metal


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Prog-jester
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars Have you read my ISIS “Oceanic” review? Then you know what to expect from here :) It’s not a joke actually, this is pretty true: music is good, vocals are hardly bearable. I prefer instrumental Post-Metal bands (PELICAN) or at least those who try to sing in the way I can endure or even enjoy (THE MORNINGSIDE). So CULT OF LUNA is a good band (I guess) but just not for my favourities’ pantheon. I won’t refuse to check some other albums (they have higher rating) from them later, but this one has left me cold. For genre’s fans I believe, but don’t miss it if you’ll chance to listen to it.
Report this review (#146788)
Posted Wednesday, October 24, 2007 | Review Permalink
Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Metal Team
2 stars The end of the 90's saw the rise of whole legions of Neurosis influenced post-metal bands. While some of them carved their own path, Cult of Luna stayed as true to the Neurosis sound as they could on their debut.

It condemns this album to the "fans of the style territory" and those fans will probably not be disappointed with this album. It is an endless outburst of violence, it's wild, compelling and very intense. But the songwriting is rather unremarkable. Not that this is a required feature with this music but some more diversity to be able to distinguish one track from the next would have been interesting.

Cult of Luna were excellent at what they tried to do. It's an accomplishment that almost deserves 3 stars and that motivated me enough to seek out the rest of their catalogue. But I can't think of anything else to say about this particular album. Decent, but not particularly inspiring.

Report this review (#275801)
Posted Thursday, April 1, 2010 | Review Permalink
EatThatPhonebook
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars 5/10

Mediocre Beginnings.

Swedish act Cult Of Luna already had their roots planted in their debut album of the same name. Like many debut albums, however, "Cult Of Luna" has nothing but a skeleton, a basic sound, and no original skin to cover it, to make it appealing. Casually produced, this album shows an interesting and somewhat promising blend of Post-Hardcore, Sludge Metal, and Metalcore and together assemble a few interesting tracks such as the closing "The Sacrifice", definitely the most multi-faceted and well structured out of the entire LP, or "Circle", which proudly earns the compliment of heaviest song here. Looking at the album as a whole, it's easy to see the talent, but the casual production dooms the LP down to very average levels. Only for the fans.

Report this review (#951734)
Posted Tuesday, April 30, 2013 | Review Permalink
UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Honorary Collaborator
3 stars "Cult of Luna" is the debut full-length studio album by Swedish sludge/post metal act Cult of Luna. The album was released through Rage of Achilles Records in August 2001. Earache Records re-released the album on CD in 2003 and on double vinyl in 2010.

The music on the album is sludge/post metal with roots in post hardcore (the Swedish post harcore pioneers in Breach are definitely not unknown to these guys). The tracks are mostly slow-to mid paced featuring some really raw and heavy sludgy riffing and some pretty extreme shouting vocals. The music is for the most part rather abrasive and probably purposedly designed to make your ears bleed but there are some more atmospheric post metal parts in the music too. They are very few though and this is first and foremost a brick heavy and fiercely aggressive album. The general lack of dynamics in the tracks, can make the 8 track, 61:06 minutes long album a bit of a trial to get through but if you like them as harsh, uninviting and raw as they come this album certainly applies.

The sound production is equally raw and gritty and it´s hard not to at least partially enjoy the sensation of being hit on the head by a brick heavy dose of sludge/post metal when it is delivered with the fierce conviction and professionalism as it is here. A 3.5 star (70%) rating is deserved.

Report this review (#1302624)
Posted Tuesday, November 11, 2014 | Review Permalink
5 stars The conventional wisdom about Cult of Luna's self-titled début album is that it's a less sophisticated and dynamic affair than the band's later material. This is actually almost entirely wrong; the band goes through nearly as many dynamic shifts as on any of their later material, and the band's slowly evolving post-metal soundscapes were already fully formed on this release. It is a bit of an oddity in their discography, due to a larger hardcore punk and doom metal influence, and it is substantially heavier than their later material, but by no means should anyone think of this release as musically unsophisticated. In fact, while Salvation and Somewhere Along the Highway are deservingly regarded as two of the best albums post-metal has to offer, their début nonetheless contains some of the band's best work.

A case in point can be found with the second track, "Hollow". It opens with a crushing sludge metal riff and some of the most frantic drumming to be found anywhere in the genre. It is not, however, by any means a musically unsophisticated composition; it evolves slowly over its ten-minute running time and the slow evolution pays off for a patient listener. The album's centrepiece, "Sleep", is even better; it almost rivals the composition of the same name from Godspeed You! Black Emperor's Lift Your Skinny Fists Like Antennas to Heaven in quality. After a heartbreaking intro featuring some superb doom riffing, what sounds like a sombre viola, and the highly effective shrieks of vocalist Klas Ryberg, the piece gradually lowers in intensity until suddenly it returns to the intensity of the song's crushing opening. The effectiveness of this reprisal cannot possibly be overstated; after seven superb full-length albums, this song remains one of the finest in Cult of Luna's discography.

A song-by-song review would be superfluous; while the album has substantial dynamic shifts, it maintains a similar mood throughout, which can make it inaccessible to listeners who are not willing to give this album the attention it deserves. However, it will reward listeners who do so; there is some superb music here, with the only significant flaw being the "loudness war" mastering (which is a problem on Cult of Luna's other releases, too, so it's nothing new, although it does seem slightly worse here). I would rank this in Cult of Luna's top four albums, alongside the aforementioned Salvation and Somewhere Along the Highway, as well as Mariner, their collaboration with Julie Christmas. This is almost flawless post-metal and, to me, represents a landmark of the genre alongside the high points of Neurosis and Isis.

Report this review (#1313159)
Posted Thursday, November 20, 2014 | Review Permalink

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