Master of Ecstasy - CD Review

Like unsealing hell from a thousand year old bottle, this music sounds more like chanting of some evil cults practicing an alternative religion of a cosmic magnitude that carries some secret messages. Dark, strange and mystical, with a strong Asian music influences, this visionary work is a fusion of hard rock, world music, progressive and psychedelic rock transfused by the supernatural.

The opening number "Shaitan" will blow your mind with its demonic fury while other songs will take you to some strange eerie landscapes lit by the northern lights. Arthur Mountaniol made this album all by himself. In terms of vocals, he uses many different styles, intonations and throat singing as well as the altered samples of his own voice.

His guitar work is nothing short of brilliant, offering a lot of innovative tones and licks that seem to have no boundaries. However there are some other songs on the record that are different. For example "Pest Control" is a comical showpiece about a pest control guy who took his job to the next level. Whereas "Wish I Could" is a just simple love song of a shaman that will relax you with its soulful drunk singing and soft intimate vibe. The final piece "Astralride" is a mesmerizing instrumental with a tribal groove, fascinating rhythm and solo guitar work which culminates in a total apocalypse.

All in all, "Master of Ecstasy" is a spellbinding album with a lot of creativity and unique vision. Even though the sound production maybe lacks a major label sheen, it instead offers something that the big mainstream artists may not be even aware of.

I would recommend this album to people with dark imagination and open mind. And this is certainly not a crowd-pleaser.

Benjamin Grant
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