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One Hour By The Concrete Lake

27 customer reviews

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Audio CD, October 19, 1999
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Editorial Reviews

Track Listings

Disc: 1

  1. Spirit Of The Land
  2. Inside
  3. The Big Machine
  4. New Year's Eve
  5. Handful Of Nothing
  6. Water
  7. Home
  8. Black Hills
  9. Pilgrim
  10. Shore Serenity
  11. Inside Out

Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 19, 1999)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Inside Out U.S.
  • ASIN: B00002EPRL
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (27 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #272,836 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

17 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Murat Batmaz on October 18, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Pain of Salvation is so much more than just a band name of three words. First of all, the Swedish prog metal band is o r i g i n a l. They are, in my opinion, the first prog metal band since the early-90's that truly managed to impress not only prog listeners but fans of other genres as well. In the 80's we had Queensryche and Fates Warning dominating, in the 90's we had Dream Theater plus a few others paving the way for hundreds of other bands. And today we have Pain of Salvation. If they continue releasing diverse, emotional, chaotic and cerebral albums in this vein, they are going to put their mark on this decade as far as prog metal is concerned.
One Hour By The Concrete Lake is their second album, however it was the first to come out in Europe. Their debut Entropia was released in Japan but didn't really get too much critical acclaim in Europe or Stateside--until their second CD One Hour came out. You may be wondering what the title of album stands for. The ideas behind it are some of the most interesting things about this release, especially regarding the radioactivity in Lake Karachay in the former USSR. Most of us might have heard of Chernobyl, for example, because it was very apparent. But learning that a lake covered in concrete had such a high level of radioactivity that it could still kill someone after only an hour standing near it is very appalling to say the least.
Daniel Gildenlow, guitarist/vocalist/(main) songwriter of POS, has always been very interested in politics, social injustice, and every other kind of wrong-doing going on in the world. He wrote the concept of One Hour during some International Relations and Nuclear Physics studies he did at school, and at the same time he was also writing a paper on music lyrics' influence on listeners on a social level.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Chris 'raging bill' Burton on May 10, 2005
Format: Audio CD
Pain Of Salvation are band that for most part, people either love or hate. I often feel like I'm one of the few who sits in middle, admiring them for being a very good progressive metal band without worshipping the sun that shines out of Daniel Gildenlow's backside. One Hour By The Concrete Lake was the first Pain Of Salvation album I bought (a few years ago now) but its certainly not my favourite. In fact, I don't really think of it as anything more than decent.

As far as originality goes, the band seemed to have it from day one. Even on their debut (Entropia) they were doing things differently which is more than can be said for the majority of progressive metal bands who were content to just rip of Dream Theater (and not very successfully, I might add). However, despite being different, One Hour By The Concrete Lake has never really impressed me, with the exception of Big Machine, a song with a finale that never ceases to send shivers down my spine.

I suppose my main complaint about the album is the production - its so flimsy that moments that sound like they should be powerful and in face just kinda sit there doing nothing. If it weren't for the metal overtones, this could be forgiven - there's more to music than crunchy guitars. But when you have a band who are clearly trying to put forward a sense of heaviness from time to time in the name of dynamics, it can be a little frustrating.

The songwriting also feels a little disjointed at times. On Perfect Element and Remedy Lane, they had mastered the art of mixing odd rhythms and strange melodies tastefully, but on this album I find the sudden changes a little too overbearing. Too often it sounds like the band are trying too hard to be different.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Dan on April 1, 2003
Format: Audio CD
Pain of Salvation's 2nd album, "One Hour By The Concrete Lake", was IMO, a huge improvement over their first album, "Entropia". "Entropia" had some very complex, original, emotional, and overall awesome songs, but sometimes it just got a little akward. "One Hour By The Concrete Lake" is a much more refined and overall better sound.
This is a concept album, (like all PoS albums), this time about a man realizing how his job affects other people. Basically, he works for a weapons industry, and he realizes that he is part of a "big machine" of events, and his job directly of indirectly leads to such things as world hunger and war in third world countries. As always, Daniel Gildenlow's lyrics are great. He's done a lot of research to come up with these lyrics. Interestingly, he cites his sources in the back of the booklet, which is a cool thing to do.
The music on OHBTCL is so...PoS! I can't exactly compare it to other bands. The music can go from aggressive metal to acoustic guitars and piano ballads in a second. Technically, it's very complex stuff. The guitar riffs are often oddly timed, and the solos are friggin' awesome. The drums are also complex, sometimes using polyrhythms. The keyboards add that nice atmosphere, and are more present here than on other PoS albums. This is the least eclectic and "weird" of PoS' albums, so I would recommend this one as a starting point.
"Inside", the first song on the album, starts off with complex rhythm guitar work and emotional vocals. This sets the basis of the story, and is one of the more eclectic songs, going through some cool changes. "The Big Machine" is a dark, brooding metal tune, with some of Daniel Gildenlow's lower vocals. "Handful of Nothing" starts off with a blinding guitar riff in 21/8.
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