Monday, October 30, 2017

Gothtober-Suffer in Paradise :"Ephemere"

Dreary enough to help get you in the mood for the coming dark season the winter solstice is about to usher in, these guys do have a gothic enough sound with the atmosphere created by the keyboards. Funereal doom might not be goth in the traditional sense, but doom metal has crossed over into goth with bands like My Dying Bride so I see Funeral doom being the spawn of that band. What is more goth than a funereal? The ten minute title track opens the album. I am always hungry for this kind of doom so the atmospheric melancholy is sweet to my ears. In the tradition of other bands I love like Evoken and Mournful Congregation. The songs have a beautiful creep to them. The atmosphere this Russian band creates is different from that of their predecessors as it is more steeped in a contrasting gentleness to the melodies.

The guitars tremolo pick on "My Pillory" in way that sound more like strings and not black metal at all. They hit a similar majestic territory as Mournful Congregation going into the verse. The guitars blend well with the organ sound. The production on this album is admirable.The drums sound a little programmed and tinny going into "the Swan Song of Hope". While the synths worked on the first two songs, they work best with more of the guitar's low end set against them.The rest of the song doesn't tap into the power I heard on the first two songs and is what I want more of. The piano part in 'the Wheels of Fate" sounds really good, but the drums need more balls to the as the patter of double bass is too lightly mixed.The low end gurgle of the vocals still works but could also use a little from the mix which finds the synths way too forward and the heaviness getting lost in the atmosphere. The clean guitar break half way into the song would have had more impact if things had seemed heavier going into it. At the seven and a half minute mark things take a more organic turn and it sounds like they really plug and showed up. The vocals are also more layered.

 The Bone Garden" finds the increasing metallic attack of the guitar over powered by the piano and softer elements that the mix is bolstering. The strings sound fine and the classical elements have their place in what these guys do, I think the heaviness really needs more love. You can hear some of the cool ideas they had in mind for the guitars but the execution is thwarted by the mix. Ironically "Call Me to the Darkside" could stand to be a little darker. They do beef up the metal, so the synths are not drowning it out. So at least it moves in a heavier direction and does get darker at the end so it must have takne time for that call to go through, I will give this album an 8 most of it's problems are in post-production. The first to songs are great and none of the songs are bad some times the point comes across better than others.

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