(All Album Reviews by phil79)
Released in 1994, it seems all likely that this was the album that fellow Swedes Opeth listened to before deciding to record their 1st album, Orchid.
Pretty much the brainchild of EoS's vocalist/guitarist Dan Swano (who ended up producing Opeth's Morningrise album), Purgatory Afterglow (and its even greater follow-up Crimson) combine heavy as hell death metal with melodic, atmospheric, and moody pieces, as well as a mixture of growls and clean vocals. Sound similar to Opeth? Well, it very much is! I think Opeth took these elements EoS used, and perfected them. However, I find EoS is more straight-forward in style and while Purgatory Afterglow contains Swano's excellent clean vocals throughout, its dominated more so by his growls. Even so, this is one of the most unique and diverse death metal bands (or albums) to come out in the mid 90's.
Some standout tracks are the epic tracks “Twilight” with its soft-hard theme and the gloomy “Velvet Dreams.” The brutal “Of Darksome Origin” and the cleanly sung “Black Tears” are excellent highlights as well. The musical and lyrical themes are top notch also, combining all that's good in death metal and none of its weaknesses.
All in all this is an excellent album/group that anyone into death metal or progressive metal should check out. If you like what you hear, look up their next release, Crimson. It consists of only 1 track-40 minutes long and is even more progressive and ambitious in scope, imo. Also check out Dan Swano's side project, Nightingale and his solo CD, Moontower. Very diverse and progressive as well. Good stuff.