...OF CELESTIAL "The Strange Infinity"

The band was formed in Ukraine in 2006. The year 2007 passed with concerts and changes of the members. The same year they started recording their debut album, bearing then the title Engrossed By Eternity. Dimmu Borgir had a great influence on the band, which we can clearly feel from their music. Though the album cover isnt too colourful, yet exciting. A young girl lying on the rails, a faint picture of a church interior in the background, with some religious statues. The music is more vivid than we expect for the first time, having seen this cover. While the portentous style of black metal is there, who is looking for a real fud music, will disapp. The sound is clean, there are several melodic guitar riffs and the keybords are accompanying the tracks all the time. After all, who want to understand the lyrics too have to listen carefully (or read the booklet). Since the album shows a high variety of rhytm, it doesnt become monotonous. Fast rhytms of snare and bass drums twirl along most of the songs, like in Engrossed By Eternity , or in In Your Eyes, which opens up with a keybord intro. But we can find some slow tracks as well, eg. Its Only Darkness And The Gloom. The odd thing about this latter one is that flute music lends colour to this fairly long record. Its a positive thing for me that the guitars dont just simply scrape, but they are very exciting.  My favorite from the album is the song Reconciliation With Desteny. The chorus part is the most fascinating and the music is also perfect. Worth mentioning that the whole musical part of the album was written by the gutarist/ vocalist Vitaly Gabelkov , so the album has a slight Burzum-feeling. To tell the truth, not being a black metal-guy, I had some prejudice against this album. Now I must admit it was a pleasant surprise to me. The record is totally correct. Not only for the heavy metal-ears, but even the black meta-fans dont have to turn it down. The boys can be proud of this well-made first disc, hopefully soon therell be a next one to follow. Besides, owing to the neighborhood of our countries, perhaps therell be chance for 1-2 concerts in Hungary sometime in the near future as well.

...OF CELESTIAL "The Strange Infinity"

Eastern European countries have been producing many promising yet even great sounding Metal acts over the years, and finding all of these true, most potential gems out of them, is like trying to find a needle from the haystack really. With enough hard work, some good findings can be made. OF CELESTIAL, this symphonic sounding Ukrainian extreme Metal act, knows how to please the extreme Metal community. On "The Strange Infinity", which also happens to be the band's debut studio album, released on Russian extreme label More Hate Productions in 2009, OF CELESTIAL show its true claws for being talented composers of an atmospheric, extreme Metal that has a strong twist of Black Metal but also some flavors of Thrash and Death Metal - and not to forget Symphonic Metal completely either. Overall the stuff what they do, flows well and effortlessly for them, having a good amount of variation squeezed into the songs, in a way reminding me of SAMAEL and even slightly SENTENCED's "North From Here" era when it comes to the guitars' sound on this particular release. Vitaliy on vocals and guitar is - at least in my opinion, the most important link of OF CELESTIAL's sound with his tasty, dark-ish vocal patterns and mercilessly heavy, catchy guitar riffs and stuff. Without dragging down any other musicians in the OF CELESTIAL line-up too much either, unfortunately Ivan's keyboard parts seem to be everywhere, at times even over-running space from all other instruments that it kind of becomes a bit irritating to listen to the record after a while. With a less keyboard-stressed effort, "The Strange Infinity" would have stood out way better as an album, I think. But this being just their debut, some things can be forgiven, and eventually forget. What partly made me to say this, OF CELESTIAL have already released their 2nd album titled "Virgin Blood" in 2011, which has probably gone through a positive facelift operation as far as the songs on it are concerned.

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