So one thing has to be said at first, I am a big fan of the older albums of VINTERSORG, I mean everything, which has been released before “Cosmic Genesis”, as there were some glorious folky melodies streaming out of one’s speakers, where some catchy anthems were audible and so on... I see, I’m dwelling too much in the past. Ok, “Cosmic Genesis” was quite proper, but I am likely to lay the coat of silence over everything, that came afterwards.
If you consider the setlist of the studio musicians, you might find some very well-known names, as he has got besides Mattias Marklung – with whom Vintersorg was already in the same band with OTYG – some other famous guys liked Steve Di Giorgio (TESTAMENT, SADUS) and Asgeir Mickelson (BORKNAGAR) on board.
First off, the intro distinguishes itself through cosmic, spacy keyboards and you’ve got that feeling, that VINTERSORG affiliates to the last album. The subsequent “The Essence” starts off very acoustic, but then it goes on with speedy Black Metal, before they’re doing an acoustic break again and then they let some slower guitars speak, before playing this queer keyboard again. So I have to say, it’s too much for my ears, I mean, I don’t have anything against rhythm changes or something else, but it should at least stay in a certain frame.
Unfortunately the songs are following the same tune, you have no time to chill, because this no album, which you can listen incidentally. Here is just too much of everything, as “The Focusing Blur” has still been very opaque after a few listenings. Only the songs “A Microscopical Macrocosm“ and „Epilogue Metalogue“, which were played nearly solely acoustic, are finding access to your ears to a certain extent.
If the good ol’ VINTERSORG has the necessaries to record such an album, I’ll beg him to do this under another band name, that no misunderstandings might occur. Shortly after this release there was the album “Crater” by FISSION released, where VINTERSORG also has to take the responsibility for it, whereby this stuff has been done better than “Focusing ...”. I don’t know exactly, what happened to VINTERSORG after his album “Ödemarkens Son”, but it must have been terrible.
It isn’t the case, that I don’t like an album, because it’s distinguishing between some older stuff of the band; it can be good nevertheless, but “The Focusing Blur” is a very indigestible album in any case, no matter who’s the interpret. (Online July 26, 2006)