Originally written by Russ Wallin.
Shining III – Angst, Självdestruktivitetens Emissarie is the third album from “Shining” It consists of 6 tracks and runs just under 48 minutes. I don’t know much about this group and I haven’t had the opportunity to hear any of their previous works, but I will state that this one of the best albums I’ve heard in the black metal category. But ya know, that doesn’t even do it justice because this album is far more than just a black metal album. It’s an album that combines darkness, doom and mayhem with a modern Swedish sound. The album ranges from fast blast beats and double kicks to tranquil goth inspired passages. The vocals are certainly black metal-ish, but I’d define this album as more dark than black. With the combination of more mellow passages, melodies and a smooth sound; it’s so much more than just black metal. The album is played flawlessly and the songs have plenty of depth and character. It’s pretty impressive to see an album of this caliber come, seemingly, out of nowhere. But with Hellhammer behind the kit, it should be of little surprise. The drumming is exceptional with lots of highlights in every song, except one (see below). The guitars were gritty, but smooth. I enjoyed that tone tremendously. Some of the riffs, while not all that complicated, are just amazing at how well they come across. Basically, I have no complaints as to the musicianship on this album. All is well presented. However I’m not a big fan of the song, Till Minne Av Daghen, which seems a waste of valuable disk space. The song is nothing more than some sound effects and a harp. Give us more metal, or at least something less King Diamond-ish! The recording certainly has a Swedish sound, a bit more unconventional than most, which is a welcomed change. All instruments sound very good on this album, more compressed than many recordings, but it smooths things out rather than smothering the sound. I’ve read several articles dealing with the technical/philosophical aspects of many European recordings vs. American recordings and this album would probably be a good focus for these discussions…there is a definite difference in this instance. Overall, Angst, Självdestruktivitetens Emissarie is amongst the best “black” metal I’ve ever heard. Buy it now!