The Strand of Time

01. Another
02. Metal
03. Howling Forest
04. Black Bile
05. To Hell and Back
06. Curses
07. The Dwelling
08. Stranger
09. The Strand of Time

Niko Beleg - Guitar/Vocals
Thomas Coc - Drums
Sebastien Le Bellec - Guitar
Sylvain Coc - Bass

Son of The Night (2008)
The Dwelling (2010)


Produced by Pictured
Recorded by Benoit Roux at Drudenhaus Studio
Mastered by Benoit Roux at MasterLab

Released 25/5-2012
Reviewed 5/8-2012


French band Pictured has an absolutely fantastic cover artwork for their first album, it gives a sense of adventure and makes me think of times of exploration of new areas of a still unexplored world. One could only hope that their music would reflect the cover artwork but as well all know these things does not always correspond too well. The reviews has been encouraging from some and less encouraging from others, there was one full score that I noticed but that is sort of a strange rating considering that some have given in bad ratings and a full score ought to be good enough so that none would dislike it. The talk of the town is of Gothenburg death metal, high energy riffs, catchy and powerful riffs and with an infectious quality and some more superlatives, at least from the record label.

Well the Gothenburg styled death metal is probably right, the singer sounds a bit like the one in Children of Bodom, the tempo is quite low though so they have a bit of their own touch. But it is not really that big a personal touch and the variation of the album is not that big either, there is some of it but just a small one. The sound and production is really good though, I really enjoy the sound that they have managed to create for this album. 43 minutes, nine tracks that is what they are offering us this French quartet with their debut album.

It is not really as impressive as the artwork, not even close. Thing is though that the sound is very good but the album doesn’t really take off, it sort of ends up quite stagnant and directionless which is a shame because that artwork really deserved a better album. There are some good touches from this band though, they do their own thing but does not quite get there with the songs. A bit of a disappointment I would say not only because of the artwork but also because of the lack of distinct songs and the lack of memorable parts on this album. It is a case of “what if”, the eternal question and for me it is a case of a band not really reaching their full potential.

So, in the ends I would conclude that Pictured does not really live up to their artwork, neither do they live up to their potential musically. It is a rather dull album with a sound that is much more impressive than any of the songs on this album, and I will not even say anything about the extremely silly song Metal. So the Frenchmen does not really get there, an album that doesn’t ever take off so I would recommend not wasting your time with it but still to keep an eye out for this band because there is some hidden potential there. Too bad that they don’t show any of it for this album though.



Label: Klonosphere/Season of Mist
Three similar bands: Children of Bodom/Arch Enemy/Nevermore
Rating: HHHHHHH (3/7)
Reviewer: Daniel Källmalm

läs på svenska