Sculptured Ivy & Stone Flowers [Bonus Tracks]

Sculptured Ivy & Stone Flowers [Bonus Tracks]

by Novembers Doom

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Sculptured Ivy & Stone Flowers [Bonus Tracks]

The four years separating Novembers Doom's first and second albums saw the Chicago-based death/doom ensemble repeatedly reconfiguring its sound and personnel in search of the perfect combination to suit bandleader Paul Kuhr's vision. And, just as its title suggested, 1999's sophomore album, Of Sculptured Ivy & Stone Flowers, found Novembers Doom chiseling away at their conservative death/doom debut's monochromatic musical mortar with tendrils of incremental melodicism (see "With Rue and Fire"), softer dynamic counterpoints ("Serenity Forgotten"), and variable tempos (is that a gallop in "Reaping the Forest Calm"?). By comparison, subsequent efforts would see them building things up again, through layered orchestrations, without forgetting the lessons learned along the way. But the most obvious way to realize just how far Novembers Doom had come during the past couple years was to listen to the three cuts revived from 1997's Every Leaf That Falls EP -- the title cut, "Dawn Breaks," and especially "The Jealous Sun" -- since all show much greater maturity, as well as compositional nuances that were totally missed the first time around. In contrast, the operatic sopranos provided by Cathy Jo Hejna (hear her swooping stealthily into tracks like "Suffer the Red Dream," "All the Beauty Twice Again," and many others) now sounded displaced and unnecessary unless they were bounced off Paul Kuhr's judiciously used dramatic deadpan, and it's not at all surprising that they were phased out on the following year's The Knowing. That album would unquestionably kick off Novembers Doom's lengthy golden era, and finally bring the band richly earned respect across the metal world. [Of Sculptured Ivy & Stone Flowers was remastered and reissued in 2008 by The End Records, upsetting some purists with the omission of "Before the Wind" (written and performed by departed keyboard player Mark Piotrowski), while appeasing others with the addition of three unreleased bonus cuts recorded that same year.]

Product Details

Release Date: 05/27/2008
Label: The End Records
UPC: 0654436010524
catalogNumber: 105

Album Credits

Performance Credits

Novembers Doom   Primary Artist
Brian Griffin   Background Vocals
Joel Nunez   Drums
Mary Bielich   Bass,Bass Guitar
Chris Wisco   Bass,Bass Guitar
Eric Burnley   Guitar,Background Vocals
Paul Kuhr   Vocals
Vito Marchese   Guitar
Erik Kikke   Guitar
Cathy Jo Jehna   Vocals
Sasha Horn   Drums

Technical Credits

Brian Griffin   Producer,Engineer,Audio Production
Joel Nunez   Instrumentation
George Cox   Representation
Novembers Doom   Arranger,Audio Production
Mary Bielich   Composer,Instrumentation
Chris Wisco   Producer,Engineer,Audio Production,Instrumentation
Eric Burnley   Composer,Instrumentation
Paul Kuhr   Composer,Graphic Design,Instrumentation
Vito Marchese   Instrumentation

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