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Russia's progressive/black metal trio Rakoth is certainly an unusual breed, considering that the lineup is comprised of a keyboardist, a vocalist who also alternates as an able flutist, and a lone guitarist. With that sort of lineup, it should come as no surprise that Planeshift is an album unlike much else circulating on the underground scene, as it combines a variety of fantastical textures to create an imaginative dreamscape of outlandish proportions. Much of Rakoth's lyrical content dwells in the realm of fantasy, as the band proudly indulges in the majestic folklore written by J.R.R. Tolkien. As such, Planeshift is an album that often remains rather silly to fans less inclined to be whisked away by these extraordinary concepts, and musically very few rock groups have ever found success when incorporating a flute into their grand design (excluding Jethro Tull). Rakoth is a band like no other, this is a certainty, and although this album skews toward those more inclined to engage in role-playing, Planeshift is surely an interesting voyage of original sound.

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