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One Hour By The Concrete Lake
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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.Read more ›
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.Read more ›
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.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Pain Of Salvations second album is another concept piece by mastermind Daniel Gildenlow. The story is rather complicated so I am not going to go into it in my review, but suffice... Read morePublished on November 28, 2007 by Steven Sly
A disillusioned man working in the weapons industry begins to bring the morals and ethics of his occupation into question, falling into doubt about what it really is that he's... Read morePublished on April 21, 2007 by Boris Kaplun
One Hour By The Concrete Lake is an unusual album. In some respects, it is the quintiscential prog rock album - difficult time signatures that change often, demanding instrumental... Read morePublished on November 3, 2006 by a music person
Pain of Salvation (POS) are a one of a kind prog-metal band. They sound like no one else, the music they create is packed with imagination and excitement, and the lyrics are... Read morePublished on October 27, 2006 by WillieB
THE BAND: Daniel Gildenlow (lead vocals, guitar), John Hallgren (guitar), Johan Langell (drums), Kristoffer Gildenlow (bass), Fredrik Hermansson (keyboards). Read morePublished on February 24, 2006 by R. Gorham
This is the oddball amongst Pain of Salvation's studio albums. Most of all, it's the only PoS album that doesn't feel like a concept album, even if it still sorta kinda is one. Read morePublished on March 15, 2005 by General Zombie
For some reason, this band has kind of taken a while to really click with me, but here lately I just cannot get enough of them. Read morePublished on August 8, 2004 by The Wickerman
This album is a perfect example of what POS music is all about. An unpredictable prog masterpiece. Gildenlow's vocals are awesome, Langell tears it up on the drums, and Johan... Read morePublished on March 23, 2004 by geetarfreak
While many fans may disagree, I consider this album to be far and away Pain of Salvation's best album. Read morePublished on January 19, 2004 by The Red Baron