Saturday, June 4, 2016

Candlemass : "Death Thy Lover"

 At first I was disappointed that this was just an EP, but then I went t listen to it and became a little confused as to how Candlemass went from being a doom band to power metal. When did this happen? Granted I haven't really checked in with them Messiah Marcolin was singing for them, and while I would accept the singer from Solitude Aeturnus as their singer I am not sure about this Mats Leven guy. His voice is very bland and sounds like every other cheese ball doing this sort of thing. He puts a little more personality into "Sleeping Giant" and it comes closer to being doom, though I think it's much closer to dark power metal, think maybe Nevermore. "Sinister and Sweet" has more punch to the guitar and feels like it might find the band returning to a more doomy state. I am sure to get a bunch of squawking about calling this band out on not being doom any more, but I think it's not asking too much to expect that from them. There are doomy passages that remind me of Sabbath's  Dio years, which were also not doom. Sabbath was a band that might have inspired doom, but they were not bound to one genre of metal. While I can see where it might be deemed unfair put such stipulations on Candlemass, I think they have gladly waved the doom banner.

The ballad like vocals of Leven get a little weary. Sure he can sin, but can he emote in a manner that serves this song best is a question I find myself asking. He would be well suited for a Savatage cover band. Things get darker and more melancholy on "the Goose" which has to be the silliest song title in some time. Once we get past the three minute mark and vocals have yet to appear then I console myself to the fact they aren't going. In this case I think I prefer them as an instrumental band rather than hearing that singer who is so hit or miss. In fact I have to round this album down to a 7.5, because I think after then singers they have had fronting the band previous to this guy, the bar was raised pretty high and I think he misses the mark. Vocals aside these guys are going for it and this doesn't sound like a bunch of old fart trying to relive the glory days, but a band creating music relevant to metal today.

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