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The Great Old Ones – “When the Stars Align”

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Two ways of doing things: try all the ideas and hope some work, or pick several ideas and trust they all work. When (if) bands mature, they gravitate toward the latter. Debut releases and even sophomores can be chock-full with creative uncertainty. Not to say it’s not a natural process. But a band can teeter from album to album: is this The Sound, or just a sound?

Turns out, third time actually is the charm: France’s The Great Old Ones who’ve just found what they’ve been looking for. Below, check out “When The Stars Align”, the third track from their upcoming third album, EOD : A Tale Of Dark Legacy. And so continues the evolution of TGOO’s self-described Lovecraftian style.

The emotional flow of “When The Stars Align” reads cleanly: a direct statement vs. blanket messaging. Furious intensity (blasting, howling) gives way to meditative intensity (doomy thundering), and then explosive intensity at the final moment (arm-tingling choir vocals). TGOO has a knack for blending black metal blastbeats, doom interludes and death metal structure into a non-messy package. A fundamentally clear formula is key.

This answers to 2012’s Al Azif and 2014’s Tekeli-li, strong extreme metal releases yet burdened by too many moving parts. Just like “When The Stars Align”, EOD : A Tale Of Dark Legacy wanders, but doesn’t meander; it explores, but has a map. This confidence imbues purpose and direction, and then the music feels lean, raw, and confident, three golden qualities of great metal.

-Andrew Rothmund

EOD : A Tale Of Dark Legacy releases on January 27 via Season of Mist. Preorder here.

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