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The Smell of Rain

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Album Review

Numerous warnings from a label known for bludgeoning releases and an artist known for darkness that Smell of Rain is a departure might not be enough to prepare devotees of both for this disc. Though he is primarily known for dark, ambient atmospheric keyboard swells, the third Mortiis release (not including the rarity collection Crypt of the Wizard) is nothing short of synth pop with nods to classics of the genre. Lead track "Scar Trek/Parasite God" could have been on that fateful David Bowie techno attempt, and the majority of the rest wouldn't seem out of place alongside New Order's repertoire or even Pretty Hate Machine. Some fans will likely decry this new attitude as wimpy, however those with an open mind will find Smell of Rain to be a smart pop exercise that still manages to be emotive. ~ Brian O'Neill, Rovi


Born: 1975 in Notodden, Norway

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s

Usually dressed in an elf, troll, or goblin costume (sometimes complete with bat wings and skull codpiece), the mysterious Mortiis was an indispensable force in the genesis of Norway's epic Viking metal sound. As the original bassist of Norwegian black metal pioneers Emperor, Mortiis was credited with stimulating the group's interest in blending furiously chaotic black metal with haunting synthesizer melodies often based loosely on Norwegian folk, thus laying the groundwork for a sound that would...
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The Smell of Rain, Mortiis
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