Ne Obliviscaris - Portal Of I review

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Band: Ne Obliviscaris
Album: Portal Of I
Release date: May 2012

01. Tapestry Of The Starless Abstract
02. Xenoflux
03. Of The Leper Butterflies
04. Forget Not
05. And Plague Flowers The Kaleidoscope
06. As Icicles Fall
07. Of Petrichor Weaves Black Noise

I was introduced to this band by a friend of mine whose taste in metal was quite similar to mine; he showed me a video of "As Icicles Fall". This took my attention, and I decided to check these guys out; and I was very pleased with what I heard.

It is clear that they are influenced by well-known bands such as Opeth, but they easily obtain their status as an original band with their style of progression, and not to forget, their violin. Normally, violins either bore me or sound whiny. But in Portal of I it takes a very active role, revealing even complete solos that, without a doubt, are mind-blowing.

While very energetic, this album also knows quiet and calm times, and manages to transits very well between the two. While the entire album carries a heavy emotional load, they succeed in taking a break in every song when the violin takes over the lead and the drums transit into an interesting, almost jazz-like rhythm, rather than double-bassing its way through. "Forget Not" has a five-minute long intro before returning to the intense energy blasts that every riff produces - but this intro is far from boring as the violinist performs with emotion and skill.

Ne Obliviscaris sound is kind of pretentious, but not too pretentious (which is what kills a lot of symphonic metal for me, personally). Portal Of I is, in my eyes, a true piece of art; full of beautiful frustrations let out in an angry, but sophisticated way. Definitely an album everyone even moderately interested in either black or progressive metal should check out.

Keep an eye on these guys, because I have the feeling their next release will be even more epic... somehow.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 10
Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Production: 8

Written by Lucerna | 04.06.2014


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.

Guest review by
Now I for one am one of the newer fans of this unique progressive metal outfit. I was unaware of the Aurora Veil EP that came out in 2007, was already establishing a fan-base, and was building up significant hype for the release of Portal of I five years later. I have never even heard of Ne Obliviscaris, until right before the album was released, with the surrounding hype growing to a fever-pitch. I was finally able to order a copy from the band's label and after a few spins, I must say, I was quite impressed.

published 30.09.2012 | Comments (6)

Staff review by
Reading other people's opinions is a funny thing. Before I checked it out myself, I was convinced Ne Obliviscaris would sound like a bastard child of meloblack-infused Wintersun and Into Eternity on drugs. And I'm not going to lie to you, there's definitely a bit of that in Portal Of I, but that's only a part of the picture.

published 24.10.2012 | Comments (22)


Comments: 2   Visited by: 89 users
04.06.2014 - 18:04
Good review imo. Describes the album well, awards and justifies a good score (which most of MS including myself seem to agree that it deserves) without going full-on fanboy. Then again, I'm not a reviewer so that ought to be taken with a pinch of salt.
If you're 666 then I'm 777
02.07.2014 - 08:23
Secundum Filium
Cool review, I felt roughly the same way. Maybe a tad pretentious, but still quite creative and diverse at the same time. Definitely looking forward to their next one coming up. \m/
Even if I knew that tomorrow the world would go to pieces, I would still plant my apple tree (Martin Luther).

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