The Pendulum Speaks
Label: Nuclear Blast
On one of metal's most Middle-Easternesque albums ever, these Israel-born, Netherlands-based sphinx fans start out re-establishing their snarlingly feral black-and-death cred before totally pulling out the sitars and bouzoukis. Then "Kashmir"-style stomping beneath "Multiple Truths" and the epic title song shifts them to a higher plane. "The Palm the Eye and Lapis Lazuli" swings like Algerian rai, minimalist percussion in "Doorways to Irkala" drones like early Velvet Underground, and closer "The Outsiders" builds Arabic scales sexily enough over 12 minutes to earn its post-climactic afterglow.