The German experimentalists are at it again with the two-part follow up to their previous release, Refugeeum (which also had two-parts as Beyond Refugeeum released in ’16 and The Grim Lord was caught completely unaware) this time called Amoretum. The concept is a play on words, combining the words “amor” and “aboretum” to symbolize a protective garden and a germ seed of love. That being said, let’s move onto the release which is as varied as any Black Space Riders album before it, all of the pieces performed tastefully and far from a jumble. It’s safe to say that these guys don’t like repeating themselves, so they try their best not to do so. That can be easily inferred from the heavy opener “Lovely Lovelie” which features heavy chunk and even death growls, which are certainly not common for these guys. Especially as deep as they’re piled on here. The song does metamorphose however, leaving the listener ready for a tune called “Another Sort Of Homecoming” which makes me think of a proggy version of The Cure or U2. It’s quite a monument, actually and shows the versatility of a band that just continues to keep getting better. I feel that Black Space Riders are Germany’s little secret, a great band that not enough people are talking about, but should be. These guys transcend genres like they change their socks, and every time that they do so, it does justice to the style they’ve incorporated.
Then we have the amazing “Soul Shelter (Inside Of Me)” which reminds me of The Cult mixed in with a bit more crunch, making for a sort of trance/goth/nu-wave sort of wonderful. I’ve come to the point where I can’t even catalog this stuff anymore, but it doesn’t even matter as good music, is just plain good music. Then you have the incredible psychedelic melody that sets off “Movements” which is a tad slower, but starts to head towards hard rock territory and truly takes on a world of it’s own. There are even the kinds of drum blasts that you’d expect from black metal on this cut. So are you still reading? Sounds good, right? Well, that’s because it is. “Come and Follow” adds in middle-eastern influence, with possibly a little bit of Stabbing Westward/The Dreaming to be found here as well.
The record invokes so many different emotions that it can be difficult to keep up with, but that’s all in a day’s work for Black Space Riders. This is something I’ve known ever since the day a record came in the mail with a note from the band asking me for their opinion. Well, they’ve sold me on this obviously, because it’s been at least five years since that day and here I am still praising them. It’s astonishing to me that they’ve dropped a record this good at the beginning of the year and are already working on the second chapter as I’m typing this review – but give this one a listen first!