Sound — 9
Landforge returns with his second album "Servitude To Earth". The one man post-metal project brings back the sounds that made his first album great along with brand new elements that raise this album's intensity level much higher. This album drew me in right from the beginning. The initial track "First Watch" welcomes you, but then blasts you with the post-metal / post-doom sounds that make Landforge so enjoyable. Landforge continues to use minimal drumming, ambient synthesizer & guitars and combines them perfectly. The album masters the post-metal sound; the suspenseful crescendos, the powerful & energetic heaviness, and the effective use of the quieter parts. On top of this, "Servitude To Earth" adds layers of its own, separating itself from the rest. The album immediately captures your attention and sends you on a journey through sound. Personally, after the first listen, this album left me near breathless. The album had the same effects through the second listen. This album picks up where the last album left off and continues to add elements and layers which provide the listener with a fantastic post-metal / post-doom experience.
Lyrics — 9
Since this album is a post-metal / post-doom effort, there is very little in the way of lyrics. Except for a minor, few seconds of spoken word, this album is purely instrumental. The music on "Servitude To Earth" does the story-telling in place for lyrics and tells a beautiful story on its own.
Overall Impression — 9
"Servitude To Earth" provides the punch of post-metal as well as the eerie and lurid sounds of post-doom. As Landforge's sophomore effort, this album feels like the musician has reached his stride and found his comfort zone. There also seems to be another level of polish added compared to the first effort "Creation Cycle". The songs seem cleaner and the rough patches that may have appeared on the previous album have been mostly eliminated. Also, in contrast to "Creation Cycle", this album has a denser sound, with songs more complex and longer in length. "First Watch" is a great opening track, as it introduces the listener to what is expected for the album. It shows off the beautiful, somber moments as well as the mighty, crashing metal sounds. The album offers a variety of sound with some songs more post-doom oriented, while others are more post-metal oriented or somewhere in between. Songs like "God-Figure" and "Phalanx" provide the needed deviation from the norm to send this album beyond expectations and beyond "another post-metal album". This album has very few faults, and as someone who is not a MAJOR fan of the metal genre, this album was very accessible and provided me with overwhelming enjoyment. This is for the post-metal fan, the doom metal fan and I even believe that the post-rock crowd would enjoy this album as well. The album is available in "pay what you want" structure and can be found on Bandcamp. This album is definitely worth a listen.