Tiamat was actually never a great band, although early in their career, they put out a couple of great albums. The Astral Sleep is a masterful atmospheric death metal album, very emotional and powerful. Soon thereafter though, Tiamat began incorporating gothic rock influences into their sound. Soon these influences began to become the sound. By the time A Deeper Kind of Slumber was released, all the death metal elements had been drained. This album marked the end of the atmospheric death metal sound of the previous albums. The harsh vocals were gone, the powerful riffs, even the pounding drums had all been replaced. Slumber indeed. I have attempted to listen to this album on several occasions and each time, I end up falling asleep. There are almost no dynamics, no energy at all. Unfortunately, Tiamat has never totally recovered as this is basically their current sound. They have attempted to re-add some metal influences, but the deep atmospheric death metal of The Astral Sleep is gone forever.