Sometimes heavier, and generally more traditionally structured, Lake of Tears' third Black Mark release A Crimson Cosmos, turned out to be the band's breakout recording. In Europe (where the Lake of Tears brand of dour but traditional metal never fell completely out of favor), critics and fans finally began giving some respect to the group and their rapidly improving sound. Songs like "Raistlin and the Rose" and "Cosmic Weed" are some of the most musically satisfying efforts from the band. But strange numbers like the curious and hokey "Lady Rosenred" and other singalongs, like "Devil's Diner," almost go too far. After starting out with a debut marked by its aimlessness, the turnaround of Crimson Cosmos -- released just four years later -- is profound for sure, but not always comfortable. A continued improvement on the Lake of Tears sound, this 1997 release signified the beginning of a new musical chapter for the band that while imperfect, represented real improvement as well.
AllMusic Review by Jason Anderson