Cult of Luna • Vertikal + II [3xLP]


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Vertikal I and Vertikal II on triple vinyl in trifold sleeve.
(Record Store Day limited edition.)



Vertikal is the sixth studio album by the Swedish metal band Cult of Luna and is also the band's first studio album since Eternal Kingdom (2008). The album was released in Europe on January 25, 2013 through Indie Recordings, and in the US on January 29, 2013 on CD through Density Records and on vinyl through Back on Black.[1] To promote the album, Cult of Luna released the song "I: The Weapon" for online streaming prior to the release of Vertikal, and released a music video for the song "Passing Through" in February 2013. The album was critically acclaimed upon release and earned an average score of 85 based on 10 reviews at Metacritic, which assigns a normalized rating out of 100 to reviews from critics.[2]

During the writing process, Cult of Luna was heavily influenced by Fritz Lang's 1927 film Metropolis, which became a major source of inspiration for Vertikal's conceptual theme, sound and imagery. Thematically, the album features ideas of cities, machinery, and factories, and it was also noted for incorporating a heavier focus on keyboards and electronic elements than on previous Cult of Luna albums. The writing sessions were particularly fruitful, leaving the band with a large collection of songs to choose from for the album. As a result, the band released the companion EP, Vertikal II, in September 2013.

Vertikal II is an EP by the Swedish post metal band Cult of Luna that was released on September 17, 2013 through Density Records/Indie Recordings.[21][11] The EP features three previously unreleased tracks that were written during the original Vertikal sessions, but not recorded. The CD and digital versions of the EP also feature a remix of "Vicarious Redemption" (originally on Vertikal) by Justin Broadrick of Jesu and Godflesh fame.

Vertikal II is seen as a continuation and completion of the band's "journey into the harshness of the monotone city landscape" that began with its early-2013 studio album, Vertikal.[11] Cult of Luna guitarist Johannes Persson said, "With Vertikal II, we complete and end a chapter that, for the last few years, have been a big part of our lives. Now we leave the inner city and look up into the vast void above."[11] At one point in the writing process, Cult of Luna considered releasing Vertikal as a double album, but scrapped the idea because, as Persson puts it, "double albums are hard, as it's hard to maintain a consistent quality."[6] The band's idea then was to release a few additional tracks shortly after the release of the studio album as a continuation – a plan that was kept secret from both their fans and record label until the EP's masters were almost completed.[6] — source