So this band popped up on my music recommendations list on last.fm. Judging on its similarities to Insomnium and Ghost Brigade (according to the site), I decided I’d give it a try. I acquired their latest album (not so late), New Moon, 2009. The title got me thinking of vampires and bad actors, I don’t know, I must have had some bad dream :D. A little background research on the band made me realise it’s been in the circles for a fairly long time with quite a strong fan base. Anyhow I started my day with “These Woods Breathe Evil” (coincidence? I was hoping at that time not :D).
Having heard the album in its entirety and having heard this band for the first time I could very easily relate to the not-so-happy-about-this-band crowd. The album has all the makings of successful studio hit and yet it lacked the punch during its intro as well as the outro, nothing that would’ve left me still grooving to the beat I heard or air drumming like a nut. No, it clearly did not leave me wanting to hear more. I sense that this is one of those grow-on-you types of album. Cutting things short, if you’ve been a fan, you’ll like them because you do. One could relate this to Amon Amarth’s Surtur Rising. Yet there are instances where this album does prove itself to be far more progressive and occult than Surtur. One’s who never liked this band have no reason to start liking it again. As for someone who’s looking for something new read on.
The music itself was quite refreshing, seeing as I have been indulging in a lot of jazz recently. The tracks are well layered, the song-writing highly impressive. It was not like what I was thought it’d be, a fancy catchy riff with vocals merging into the backdrop of the soundscape created by the guitars.
No these vocals were good. Some of the clean parts had very striking resemblance to Katatonia’s Night is the New Day. Dashes of death riffs with keys interlacing created quite an doom-like atmosphere. And then there are tracks that really reflect their Finnish roots (metal-wise), good old blackened death riffs with deep growls. Contrary to this sombre image, there are places where Mikko takes clean vocals with acoustic backing showcasing the mastery of minimalism that is so distinctive of doom metal.
I would also further go on to say that this album seems progressive in a lot of places, something towards which I’m highly biased to. Had they only composed this one bombastic intro or this orphic end to the album, I would’ve most probably be raving about this album. I’d be looking forward to something new from them nonetheless.
For shitty extremes a 6/10.