The Porcelain Throne: Aurora (Denmark)

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Welcome back to The Porcelain Throne! This time around, we have Jimmy McNulty to detail out the sadly short career of a sweet melodic death metal band. I am sure we all had bands like this one back in our early days of discovering music. They were hard to find, but they sounded better than many massively popular bands in their genre, so they were surely going to be the next big thing! Unfortunately fame is hard to find for some talented bands, but The Porcelain Throne is here for you to shout your under-appreciated knowledge to the best audience in metal. Send your ideas and articles to tohthrone@gmail.com!

Hey flushers!  Jimmy McNulty here, happily contributing to YourLogicIsFlushed’s Porcelain Throne series.  What follows are a few reasons I wanted to share Aurora with you:

1. Information about Aurora is almost impossible to find (poor fellas don’t have a single review on Metal-Archives.com).
2. They disbanded during a time when melodic death metal wasn’t that big, but could probably survive now if they were still a band.
3. I enjoy death metal today because of them. They were a huge gateway band for me.

The year is somewhere around 2003. A young James McNulty is in college, enjoying the high-speed internet that was only found in dorm rooms at the time.  “What’s this thing, Napster? You mean I can obtain free music AND piss off the lousy drummer from Metallica? Count me in.”  At that time I had an album or two from bands like Strapping Young Lad and The Haunted (whom I thought were death metal back then). Somehow I discovered Aurora, exactly how I cannot recollect, as there were no metal blogs at the time. I had a BITCH of a time finding music by them. Napster would return a couple of search results with maybe three seeders. Even now the first track off their first full-length, “Aurora Borealis” is damn near un-google-able. I would watch a song sit idly in my queue for up to a week, but suddenly it would be filled within 10 minutes!  (That’s right folks, downloading single songs at a time, to varying degrees of quality).  I would actually rejoice upon the completion of a full Aurora album!

Driving around campus blasting a recorded CD-R of Aurora, I knew there was something special going on there. The guitarists were playing fluid riffs at varying tempos and technical, yet melodic solos.  The drummer?  I don’t know how to explain it, but I was hearing fills and tempo changes that I’d never heard before. This was a talented group of metal musicians, impressive to the ears of myself and my friends.


Eos (1998)
Eos is heavy enough to be considered death metal, yet melodic enough to catch someone’s ears who isn’t yet sold on OSDM bands like Cannibal Corpse. The first half of the album has some odd melodic vocal hooks that I think are attributable to the language barrier (including some bizarre female vox on “Ethereal Goddess” and “Elyzium”). Still, they bring the heat with riffs and melodic passages throughout. The second half of the album sees the band downing a few 5-Hour Energy Drinks and taking it easy on the vocals, but ramping up the speed of the overall instrumentation.

“Black Tears” is a mostly instrumental song that I didn’t quite love at first listen, but now is in my top 10 metal songs of all time. Listen to those time changes! And the guitar solo is simply and utterly brilliant.

The last song on the album, “Childhood Memories”, is a slow burner with an immensely memorable vocal pattern towards the end.  It would brings tears to my eyes if I weren’t such a God-damned man! I’m not a lyrics bro, but I do appreciate the end:

“and I remember you always asked me, ‘why can’t we fly?’  At the time… I didn’t have the answer.” Then the final, raspy screaming of  “Goodbye… CRUEL WORLD!”


Sadiam EP (1999)
I can’t remember who, but someone claimed that this marked their trajectory towards more hard-rock oriented metal. It’s good, but the only song that approaches the excellence of Eos is “Home”, however I’m not going to waste any real estate with a song from the EP.  It has a little more head-banging, upbeat tempos and hooks, and less of a sense of melancholy than Eos.


Devotion (2000)
Okay, so you have one insanely impressive debut album that didn’t really grab the metalsphere’s attention… what next? How about adding progressive elements? Check. Extend song lengths? Check. I can tell they worked hard to become the next name in heavy metal, and this kind of move worked for some modern bands like Mastodon and Machine Head, but not for poor Aurora. The title track “Devotion” is 10:52 in length and has around four minutes of ambience/doom in the middle, reminiscent of a longer Pink Floyd song (I.E. “Animals”), before kicking back into breakneck speed for the final two minutes. “Slow Down”, the song they previewed prior to the album’s release, is phenomenal (I tried very hard to find a stream) and features a KILLER guitar solo featuring electric and acoustic playing together. The final track “You” is 11:44 of ambient garbage with one minute of metal. Skip it.

“Catharsis” is the best song that Aurora ever composed. Everything about it is pure perfection. (I submitted this for Riff of the Week, guitar solo edition)


Dead Electric Nightmares (2002)
AKA:  nail in the coffin.  With their Sadiam EP, they included a little hard rock to try to gain new fans and failed. With Devotion, they went progressive and failed. Come 2002, with Dead Electric Nightmares, they had little to nothing to lose and injected a heavy dosage of hard rock and hooks. It’s not a bad album by any means, but it is by far their least good album. There are several whiffs to be found here, but it also contains a 100% unflushable track in “New God Rising”, and sure enough I can’t find a good YouTube stream but here it is on GrooveShark (whatever the fuck that is):

(Seriously, click this link)

It is THE MOST death metal track they ever released, with rapid-fire double bass drumming and riffs as heavy as any they’ve written. Having said that, there are so many mediocre songs on the album that it’s difficult to listen to straight through. “Watching Falling Breathing” is ambient/wacky filler, “Jack” is a goofy fucking pop song with distorted guitars, and “Chains of God” is a laughable swansong to end a fantastic band’s career. I highly recommend leaving on the great note of “New God Rising”, so as not to let the band’s missteps guide you.

Aurora was a band with two strikes against them right out the door: competing with bands with the same name, and arriving at a time when melodic death metal wasn’t big. I am truly sympathetic that they couldn’t make it, and I’m sure this fate is suffered by many other talented bands.

I want to thank Jimmy for this fantastic article, and encourage the rest of you to send those bands that have a special place in your heart to tohthrone@gmail.com, so they too can sit upon the throne. 

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  • Metaphysical Edward

    Downloading music via Napster (for me, Limewire) is really taking me back McNulty, lol.

    Good shit.

    • YourLogicIsFlushed

      I was a Limewire guy myself. What a friggin’ mess that was.

      • Metaphysicalfuckmountain ov St

        Don’t even get me started from the misspellings, to the mislabelings, it was a clvsterfvkk.

        • Metaphysical Edward

          Digging the name change combo mash up here!

          • Metaphysicalfuckmountain ov St

            I saw that we were getting simultaneously metaphysical and fuckmountainy.

          • #TeamTyreal

          • Metaphysicalfuckmountain ov St

            Goddamnit are we not distributing between the days now!

          • BLVCKBEVRD’S FLESH WOVND

            Yeah, we only has so many names.

          • I am eagerly awaiting the day that everyone has to add Flaccid Penis to their name.

          • Metaphysical Edward

            Edward Meehoineyhoin’s Flaccid Anus

      • Metaphysical Edward

        I recall, roughly sixteen years ago, staring at my computer screen for an hour just waiting to get one Atmosphere song. By comparison, now, I can download full length, high quality albums to a mobile device in like two minutes.

      • still remember that I spent 6 years of my life thinking that Cradle of Filth did a Castlevania song cover

        • YourLogicIsFlushed

          hahahaha, perfect example of Limewire fuckery

          • VV.

            I’m pretty sure I still have “NIN” performing the Zelda theme on my computer. And “Metallica” playing Imperial march.

          • Paris Hilton

            Another perfect example of Limewire fuckery is “Buried Alive” By King Diamond that Limewire labelled as a Metallica/Megadeth collaboration lmfao

          • CT-12

            Hey, I’ve been thinking of doing a write up for the Porcelain Throne, but I’m still sort of confused as to what it is. Is it supposed to be a band that isn’t that popular but you bump all the time or something similar?

          • YourLogicIsFlushed

            Totally missed this comment the other day. Basically you are correct, it is any band that you have a good amount of knowledge on, and that we hardly ever mention on this site. They can be popular or not, just something you love and think more people here need to hear. Definitely send me an email if you are thinking about writing one!

          • CT-12

            Ok, gotcha

        • oh yeah! and that System of a Down covered a Zelda song

        • CT-12

          I downloaded a bunch of Slayer songs from Morpheus and someone labeled Dark Angel’s “Darkness Descends” as a Slayer song (which I knew was false when I heard it because of how different the 2 were). I went about 6 years as well not knowing who did that song until I finally got that album. Weird shit.

      • Paris Hilton

        Shit takes me back to downloading Diabolus in Musica over Limewire. Time has shown me what a truly awful fucking sentence that is.

    • I think I used them all… Remember Audiogalaxy?

      • Metaphysical Edward

        Did not use that one myself, Deputy.

    • Dennis the Peasant

      Lars is going to hunt you down.

      • Nordling Ed Pants 666…

        Without mercy? All Nightmare long?

    • Kazaa anyone? Morpheus?

      • Reported.

        Flagged multiple identity troller #6239

        GL

        • Elite Extremöphile

          GL keeping the toilet clean

        • Moderator fail #692
          Please do your job, mods.

          • Ann, I am still at a loss for words. That guy was so frickin’ great. I bookmarked it for future hilarity!

            #RIPJIMGORDON

            GL

          • BLVCKBEVRD’S FLESH WOVND

            A trve classic in coal rolling.

            #JIMGORDON4LYFE

          • JIM GORDON DONATES TO NPR.

            #JIMGORDONFACTS

            GL

          • JIM GORDON APPLIED TO BE A MOD AT NPR.ORG BUT WAS TOO LIBERAL FOR DA JOB.

            #JIMGORDONFACTS

            GL

          • JIM GORDON IS AXL POSENBURG’S FATHER

            #JIMGORDONFACTS

            GL

          • BLVCKBEVRD’S FLESH WOVND

            We need to invite Jim Gordon to TOH but we’re all banned and he’s 2k00l4sk00l

            #JimGordonFacts

          • JIM GORDON REALLY DOES THINK HE IS SMARTER THAN DER INTERNETS.

            #JIMGORDONFACTS

            GL

      • BLVCKBEVRD’S FLESH WOVND

        I remember using Kazaa for some brief period long ago.

      • Metaphysical Edward

        I think I had a brief stint on Kazaa, but was mostly a Limewire pvrist and used it until a) they wanted to charge money or b) it just wasn’t a thing anymore, lol.

        • Lacertilian

          I used both, along with Napster & Morpheus because I was a dirty scumdog who couldn’t always find what I was looking for…
          e.g. Slayer bootlegs from 1985.

      • Paris Hilton

        Fucking rights Kazaa! Brings me back to downloading tunes on Limewire, burning them onto blank CDs, sticking that shit in my Walkman, then wheeling bitches on MSN Chat.

        • AIM 4 LYFE. gtfo with that MSN BS.

          • if we want to be totally trve, we should start a AIM group. I am sure I can still get into my old AOL account. lolz

            GL

          • I am DOWN.

          • Oh god. I can remember my login info too. And now all the memories are flooding in. Gotta go kill myself outta embarrassment brb

          • YourLogicIsFlushed

            I believe mine was IPissExcellence for awhile, after a line from Talladega Nights

          • I was (still am) really into Jeeps. I will not divulge what mine was. Far, far too embarrassing.

            GL

          • Mine was a nickname followed by “rox”. Burn the entire fucking internet down.

          • was it a hilarious jeep slogan like “it’s a jeep thing… you wouldn’t understand”?

          • HA, nope. Here is a picture (before and current) of 1948 Cj2a Willys Jeep I am redoing. Since we have moved (the last 3 months) it has been on hold. But, I am getting ready to start putting the motor back together. Hopefully by the spring I will doing body work.

            PUMPED

            GL

          • IS THERE ANYTHING YOU CAN’T DO GL?!?!?!?!

          • JöhnnytheMotherFuckin’Crünch™

            Fix Chris Holmes’ 87 Trans Am

          • VV.

            Did you have a chatroom girlfriend? I did. I was sooooooo cool.

          • YourLogicIsFlushed

            I am still hoping mine works out. We haven’t spoken in a few years. Like 7.

          • VV.

            That’s not that long ago. You might still have a chance!

          • LOL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

          • Paris Hilton

            I had a chatroom gf in like Grade 7. I was cool as shit! Not anymore…

            >tfw no chatroom gf

          • VV.

            ::walks over to Paris::
            ::gives her a hug::
            ::sniffs her hair::

          • BLVCKBEVRD’S FLESH WOVND

            ::sneaks up behind Paris::

            ::pulls out scissors and cuts off a lock of hair::
            ::runs madly away, cackling::

          • Paris Hilton

          • VV.

            That’s a pretty heart-melting puppy dog face.

          • Paris Hilton

            People wonder why I can get away with being so wealthy while doing absolutely nothing? That face, right there baby!

          • that reminds me of the ‘piranhas’ attack in my city:

            last year, women get attacked in my city when they went to shop in the comercial centre. the attackers were known as ‘piranhas’ and were also criminal women.

            They cutted the hair of their victims with lawn scissors to sell it in black market/beauty saloons for a lot of money. The beauty saloons buyed the robbed hair to make hair extensions 😛

          • BLVCKBEVRD’S FLESH WOVND

            The more you tell us about Venezuela, the scarier it sounds.

          • I think I’m doing wrong the promotion, then. But it was funny! every women that went to the comercial centre of the city were with cap and ponytails inside the hat to prevent the attack lol

          • BLVCKBEVRD’S FLESH WOVND
          • i don’t know what i just saw; but rest assured my life will never be the same.

          • those were goood times lol

          • Paris Hilton

            I refuse. MSN Chat was the shit! I saw my first pair of titties over MSN Chat. When bitches would send me the 😛 face over MSN Chat I knew the pussy was close.

          • ICQ… back when only nerds used the innernettes.

          • Lacertilian

            people try and convince me to reactivate my facebook based upon functions that ICQ was performing for me in year 8 of high school in 1998.
            Fools.

      • Stockhausen

        I Kazaad like my life depending on it. It’s how I found Crimson Moonlight.

        • JöhnnytheMotherFuckin’Crünch™

          Did Kazaa have a blue screen? I’m racking my brain trying to remember the one I first used. Was around 2001.

          • Stockhausen

            I believe Kazaa was a light green, maybe yellowish screen. You might be thinking of Morpheus, for some reason I remember that one being blue. I could be wrong on all of that, though.

      • Dental_Damnation

        Kazaa and Limewire. So much porn

        • first day of college (for me):
          *plugs computer into high-speed ethernet
          *browses dorm building’s workgroup
          *finds dumbasses who share porn folders and LOAD UP!

      • JöhnnytheMotherFuckin’Crünch™

        bt junkie?

    • VV.

      Ahhh, Limewire. Back when I was a young rebel who thought it was cool and edgy to pirate music, I downloaded Limewire pro off of Limewire free.

      • meta!

        • VV.

          Can’t get those viruses, bro!

          • Gvrp

            Dem viruses. Oh man.

      • Metaphysical Edward

        Very high tech and ahead of your time, W.

    • KJM

      WinMX FTW

  • Tyreeeeeeeal
    • David Vincent on Tinder

      Can’t see the line can you Russ?

      • Tyreeeeeeeal

        Nope!

          • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

            scampering to the void

          • Tyreeeeeeeal

            Hey GL, I’m going bear hunting tomorrow. I doubt I’ll get anything but it’s worth a shot.

          • NICE. You should provide us with pics! Adds to the effect…. Good luck man! I will be in the wood too. Channel the inner bear brah!

            GL

          • Tyreeeeeeeal

            Thanks duder! Good luck to you as well.

          • Paris Hilton

            Rifle or bow!?

          • Tyree hunts bear with his bare hands.

            #tyreefacts

            GL

          • Tyreeeeeeeal

            Rifle.

          • Paris Hilton

            Hunting bear with a bowl may be a dangerous pursuit! Unless of course you are hunting the Sugar Crisp bear… That’s sweet though! I hunt black bear with both

          • hunting karhu?

          • Paris Hilton

            Hunting Kaiju

          • VV.

            Ever seen Trollhunter? Awesome movie.

          • Metaphysical Rites ov Rectum

            The Norwegian? It was really enjoyably good.

          • VV.

            I agree. Great fun.

          • Paris Hilton

            Fucking rights it is!

          • kaiju bone powder, for male potency. i use it myself

          • Metaphysical Rites ov Rectum

            I shall eat them alive

          • Stockhausen

            Worth a………………………………

            ..

            …..
            .wait for it…..


            ….
            .
            SHOT. HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

          • David Vincent on Tinder

            You just split my sides sir. No seriously stop trying to hack me to pieces you maniac.

          • Stockhausen

            Your name is splitting mine. Excellent.

          • Tyreeeeeeeal
          • CT-12

            Woah dude, what the fuck, I didn’t even see you had a TOH album last time I checked your bandcamp! Hope your tour goes well man!

          • (•_•) / ( •_•)>⌐■-■ / (⌐■_■)

          • Stockhausen

            Yessssss.

          • David Vincent on Tinder

            I hope Conan has some good pictures of Beverly d’ Angelo from back in the day.

          • This seems like a good time to remind everyone I’d prefer they didn’t post NSFW pics in the comments.

          • David Vincent on Tinder

            TheMotherfucking King and well as all of us here shall respect your wishes.

          • was a young child, Beverly d’Angelo really got my jimmies tingling.

          • JöhnnytheMotherFuckin’Crünch™

            Still does, even as an emphysemic mother of a couple of good for nothing nazi boys, I’d still do it

        • David Vincent on Tinder

          When Santa squeezes his fat, white ass down that chimney tonight, he’s gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse!

  • Nordling Rites ov Karhu

    Are you teying to tell me that Denmark has produced a great metal band that doesn’t have King Diamond?
    I don’t believe you

    • and better drummers than Lars Ulrich? lol

    • IronLawnmower

      King Diamond and great metal band in the same sentence. Something seems off here.

      • Nordling Rites ov Karhu

        The lowest quarter of my body (which is ready) would like to make temporary acquitance with the lower middle half of your body

        • IronLawnmower

          King Diamond has the worst voice in metal. Juusst saying.

          • Metaphysical Rites ov Rectum

            Burn! Heretic!

          • Dennis the Peasant

            Stop repressing him!

          • Metaphysical Rites ov Rectum

            Bloody peasant!

          • Dennis the Peasant

            Oh, what a giveaway! Did you hear that? Do you see him repressing me?

          • Metaphysical Rites ov Rectum

            Will you shut up!

          • King God of Holy Mountain

            *best. Hail to the king baby

    • Metaphysical Rites ov Rectum

      Okay I believe you after all.

    • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

      Vinland forever eternal….

  • Dennis the Peasant

    Pantera shirt? Denmark? Instant flush!

    • YourLogicIsFlushed

      Hey, don’t talk shit about Hamlet!

      • Dennis the Peasant

        My loyalty belongs to Sweden rather than Denmark.

        • But you’re a Finn… And you hate the other Northern Euro countries. You are a strange person.

          • Dennis the Peasant

            I hate Finland as well. I’m just saying that I’d rather choose Sweden than Denmark.

          • Morbo

            ALL HUMANS ARE VERMIN IN THE EYES OF MORBO.

          • BLVCKBEVRD’S FLESH WOVND

            Where’s Zapp!?

    • TrickleDownOvTacoKvltRiff

      Pantera shirt? Instant flush!

  • IronLawnmower

    http://youtu.be/3kqE51vqsUY?t=1m20s

    Another sadly overlooked death metal band. Really sucks when good muscians don’t get where they deserve due to whatever bullshit.

  • TrickleDownTacoRiff

    “how sad and bad and mad it was – but then, how it was sweet”
    ― Robert Browning

  • if anybody needs this band’s music, send me a message. i don’t feel bad since they’re long defunct.

  • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

    Great post McNulty. I dig what I’m hearing of this band, too bad they couldn’t keep it going. They had a lot of potential judging from these tracks you’ve highlighted.

    I can think of a few bands that released great music but broke up or went defunct before anybody took notice, like Lykathea Aflame.

    Lykathea Aflame was a progressive technical death metal band from the Czech Republic, and they only put out one single album, a release titled “Elvenfris.” This one album, which was released in 2000, is quite possibly the greatest metal album you’ve never heard. The level of musicianship and songwriting on this album is unreal, just incredible. This album has it all, such as:

    –Insane technicality that makes Origin and Archpire sound like your dad’s garage band trying to play with carpel tunnel syndrome.

    –Beautiful melodies and symphonic elements that perfectly compliment the brutal death metal.

    –Face-melting solos and an intoxicating atmosphere.

    But enough of my ranting, listen to the music and behold its glory!

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eimRwSbq2bk

    • frozengoatsheadupanunsarse

      Durn, this is quite something!

      • Matt Pike’s Sweaty Left Nipple

        Indeed. Sucks they only released one album. But damn, WHAT A FUCKING ALBUM!! More people should know this exists.

  • Xan

    Me like.

  • Did you end up running into Aurora/Aurora Sutra (Project Pitchfork side project) during your search? I eventually got their CD’s, but ran into that same fucking awful Euro-club shit band you mentioned when I looked them up. *cringes*