Review of the Album "A Fallen Temple" by Greek Death Metal Band Septicflesh
A Fallen Temple Is a Different Kind of Album for This Greek Band
“A Fallen Temple” is the 1998 studio album by Greek symphonic death metal band Septicflesh and it continues in the style of the previous album Ophidian Wheel. The album also explores musical territory that is a stark contrast for this heavy band. How is this the case? The female vocals are louder and more of an opera style for one. Whether this is good or bad depends on your musical tastes. I prefer musical variety instead of the standard death metal music with rough vocal growls all throughout.
There Is a Lacuna Coil Influence In This Album
“Marble Smiling Face” has an interesting musical combination of clean and rough vocals and the riffing style is a mix of old Theatre of Tragedy with a touch of Lacuna Coil. Stylistically, this song is very much like what we would hear on the album In a Reverie as the song does definitely have that Gothic rock feel to it.
Septicflesh Is One of Those Bands That Have Been Able to Reinvent Themselves
Septicflesh and Rotting Christ are the two bands from Athens that have managed to not only stay active for over a quarter century though in the case of Septicflesh they were inactive from 2003 through 2007 but in the latter part of the 1990s they showed that they could reinvent themselves and create albums with great musical contrasts.
Septicflesh Really Shows Their Musical Variety In This Album
“Brotherhood of the Fallen Knights” starts off this album and this one lyrically dives into the territory of fantasy themed lyrics as knights have vowed to defend their territory from outsiders. There is also the use of clean male vocals, something we did not see on this band's first two albums. There is a degree of patience involved in trying to listen to the albums of Septicflesh as they tend to be long and drawn out just like the case of Opeth. But then you can also make that kind of case for Metallica which also has had the tendency to write albums that are 70+ minutes long but in the case of Septicflesh, their works tend to be heavy in nature with lots of vocal growls and lyrics that for this album are starting to explore the fantasy type. “
"Setting of the Two Suns"
"Underworld - Act 1" Is a Special Song
"Underworld – Act 1” sees the band really explore a type of musical play that resembles a kind of singing that we hear in a choir and there is a harmony of voices here. How interesting this is for Greece's Septicflesh and 2020 is a special year for them as they would have turned 30 years old had it not been for that brief hiatus from 2003 through 2007. There continues to be that operatic chant as the male voices dominate this song and even though this song is not like any we have heard from this band it really is refreshing to hear instead of the same songs that have the same structure combined with the vocal growls.
Another Way to Analyze the Band Septicflesh
I'm not going to say that Septicflesh is a better band than Rotting Christ but they sure know how to change their approach and make it work. “Temple of the Lost Race” sees Septicflesh speeding up their musical performance as it is fast for a while and then gets into this sort of mid-tempo kind of groove similar to the band Sepultura.
Final Thoughts About the Album A Fallen Temple
“Underworld – Act 2” continues in the same style that the first Act did and it is almost lyrically like a stage play. If you have been able to tolerate this lengthy album with all of the time changes in this album, then you deserve congratulations because the music from these guys may be an acquired taste for some fans. Whatever the title of this album is, these Greek guys haven't fallen into mediocrity but they have changed their music in some ways and they have become one of the best Greek metal bands of almost the last 30 years. It is unfortunate that the nation of Greece is only referred to as a declining country. Musically, this is a country that I would say is growing and if future trends are any indication, Greece is a country that should grow musically and not just in the thrash metal genre. The best songs in A Fallen Temple include both Underworld songs and Marble Smiling Face. In spite of all that we have discussed we have not discussed a few of the songs one of them being the Setting of the Two Suns. The style is more like modern In Flames. For those of you that are not aware, In Flames is one of the most popular melodic death metal bands in Sweden that later reinvented themselves and became more modern metal. But in the case of the song we were just discussing, the vocals get even rougher but once again, these Greek guys show why they deserve consideration even for an album that was released over two decades ago.
"Marble Smiling Face"
© 2020 Ara Vahanian