Norwegian symphonic Black Metal band ODIUM only recorded 1 album before disbanding. “The Sad Realms Of The Stars” was passed over in silence, and wasn’t given very much attention, even though it features well known musicians such as Secthdamon (MYRKSKOG), ZYKLON) on vocals and Anders Eek (FUNERAL, ex- MYRKSKOG) on drums. The cover art is done by Morfeus of LIMBONIC ART, a band that has a lot in common musically with ODIUM. While the cover art is interesting, the band portraits inside the booklet are some of the cheesiest and most (unintentionally) funny I have ever seen. However, this is a good debut album.
ODIUM plays keyboard oriented Black Metal in the vein of LIMBONIC ART. The production is clear, making every instrument easily discernable. Still, the drums are mixed a bit too high, almost drowning the guitars in some parts. The first track, “Winterpath”, sets the pace for the rest of the album, with fast drums and guitars and a layer of melodic keyboard on top. It is well played, but the pace is however the album’s biggest problem. The same pace is used in almost every aggressive part, giving the album a lack of diversity. Secthdamon’s vocals are typical Black Metal rasps, with some superfluous echo-effects. Some of the riffs are very melodic and catchy, making “Winterpath”, “Towards The Forest Horizon” and “The Brightness Of The Weeping Kingdom” the better tracks. The rest of the tracks aren’t bad, but they simply fail to stand out.
While the album obviously has its flaws, it also contains some very interesting parts that make this an album worth checking out. It’s a quite impressing debut album, and fans of LIMBONIC ART should pick this up without hesitating. (Online June 17, 2004)