VARATHRON - CROWSREIGN - BLACK LOTUS
Apparently the lyrics of Crowsreign revolve around the concept of the domination and rule of evil and Satan - although not having the lyric sheet one cannot be certain - in which case this album would have an interesting aspect to it. Otherwise, the music dwells in the dire straits. That might be so typical of the Greek scene, but Varathron has its own specific issues. The band's music has a base analogous to something Dissection might start off with, yet the new line-up has put out a weak effort. The vocals of Stefan Necroabyssious are powerless and the growls almost feigned. The music suffers in the mix and gets points deducted not only for its repetitive and derivative riffs, but also for the presence of keyboards. The drums, in particular, are lukewarm and sound unsubstantial. The drummer needs to come up with interesting beats and never record at the same studio again. If the lyrics are the only interesting component of Crowsreign then track number nine, the twelve-minute long The King Of Asine, is probably the band's ace being based on a respected Greek poem. The quartet needs to come up with better music as having distinctive lyrics and expensive photography is usually not good enough a reason to buy a disc. - Ali "The Metallian"