IN THAT UNTOUCHABLE PLACE BEHIND THE WALL OF TIME
With CITADELS, Galt Aureus has -- even more than expected -- exceeded their own past achievements in the architecture of sound. The melodic, chordal, and rhythmic progressions that built their past albums have united, in CITADELS, into just what the title promises: indomitable fortresses on heights, "in-your-face" displays of the makers' might in a place unreachable by anything less than the best.
To call Galt Aureus "fusion music" would understate -- and misrepresent -- the artists' achievement. They fuse the best of many
genres -- the clear precision of classicism, the passion of romanticism, and the intransigent heartbeat of the best of rock --
into the foundations for vast pleasure gardens, into telescopic views of immense vistas, into high-tech towers and rich fortresses of sound that no one could have imagined might exist.
Even a casual background hearing of any one track -- for instance, "Before The Fall," whose lyrics include the line that titles this
review -- explodes throughout the mind, as if Galt Aureus had discovered a means to transmit the stimuli of all five senses directly
into the brain through the auditory nerve.
On the first hearing, or on any other hearing, CITADELS makes the most startling sounds seem inevitable. Galt Aureus' music, particularly in CITADELS, resembles nothing you have heard in all your life -- but it will convince you that you might have known, that you should have known, such music all your life.
Though Galt Aureus fuses genres as masterfully as it fuses sonic extravagance with structural precision, it does not present these
fusions (of different genres, and of the familiar with the hitherto unimagined within those genres) as ends in themselves. As a skilled
metallurgist refines a variety of ores and combines the resulting metals -- not for the mere sake of combination, but to serve a
specific purpose -- so Galt Aureus fuses genres, not for the sake of fusion, but to create a specific effect. Listening -- casually or more carefully -- to CITADELS lets one experience, not only how it might feel to see and to live in a world whose greatness defied all that might weaken or destroy it, but how it feels to create -- and to defend -- great things.
I've only one suggestion for future Galt Aureus albums (or for a re-record of this one) -- Galt Aureus' lyrics have so much to say that
I wish the artists would articulate more clearly, just to make sure that all the words stayed intelligible through those gorgeous layers
upon carefully stitched layers of orchestration.
Even though I enjoy listening to Galt Aureus albums, I don't need semi-discernable lyrics as an excuse to do so: I'd listen even more
often if the lyrics had all come through clearly on first hearing -- and I'd have listened almost as often if CITADELS had consisted
entirely of the instrumentals. (Of course, some recording artists do intentionally make their lyrics hard to discern: I would hate to see
Galt Aureus fall into the same trap. Galt Aureus' lyrics stand out because they actually deserve hearing -- and deserve singing. They do not deserve half-burial, not even half-burial by Galt Aureus' compellingly brilliant instrumentation.)
Unique, fresh, rock album
The first few times I listened to the album I couldn't stop playing the tracks "Our Own Versailles" and "The Armada" over and over. I almost didn't have time for the rest of the album. I can honestly say now that I love every other track on this album as much or more, all for different reasons. This is definitely the type of album you can listen from start to finish. The voices and instruments are very strong, the lyrics are intelligent, each song invokes unique emotions, and i feel every song is impossible to get sick of. This is my number one recommended album for any rock fan.