Pictures of Pain
The Reckoning
Style: Thrash, Speed, Death, Doom Power, Progressive, Black
Release date: November 26th 2010
Playing time: 67:22

Variety and diversity are the key-words for this release. A potpourri of styles and influences moulted into songs that don't turn out to be loose sand, but are well glued together into songs with a head and a tail. Based on thrash they mix in black, progressive parts, death and power metal very naturally. Vocalist Hans Helge changes easily from clean into aggressive screams and hellish growls. Sometimes you think you hear King Diamond, then Ozzy, then Dany Filth.

The song "Beyond" starts with an intro, after which the Metal Church kind of opening riff takes the lead. Not only is there a big variation in the songs, but also the several songs differ a lot in style. "Eternal Rage" opens like a black metal song with the aggressive singing and then clean singing and growls vary each other. "Deviator" takes over and the King Diamond influences are on top, but then in thrash metal style. "Sign of Times" sounds more progressive and in "Final State" the variation of the vocal styles reaches its climax.

These Norwegians have opened my eyes and with Andy LaRocque mastering the whole piece, it all sounds great too. This is a record that still will be good after listening to it 50 times; it is almost a miracle that the band has succeeded in mixing so many styles without making a big mess of it. I hope that metal heads will be so open-minded and not to think in boxes and just let the record absorb them. Every metal fan that digs styles between progressive metal and black metal should at least get acquainted with the music of the band and then decide if it is your cup of tea. They surely convinced me! Surprise of the year!


01. Betrayel

02. Beyond

03. Eternal Rage

04. Deviator

05. Sign of Times

06. Years of Disgrace

07. Reckoning

08. Final State

09. From the Ashes (demo 06)

10. Guardian of Tears (demo 05)


Pitch Black Records

Distribution: Twilight
Reviewed by: Reinier de Vries
Date: November 11th 2010