Title: One For Sorrow
Genre: Melodic Death Metal
Release Date: 14th October 2011
Label: Century Media
INSOMNIUM were founded in 1997 and hail from Finland. They have four albums under their belt: ‘In the Halls of Awaiting’ (2002), ‘Since the Day It All Came Down’ (2004), ‘Above The Weeping World’ (2006) and ‘Across the Dark’ (2009) with the fifth ‘One For Sorrow’ just freshly released adding to the count. Although they’ve been described as Melodic Death Metal band, they reach out from the confines of the genre by employing elements from other branches of that great Metal beast – be it doom, folk Metal, Post-metal to some prog-ish (in a good and not overbearing measures).
The beginning is superb; atmospheric keys evoke the mood of thick melancholy and wistfulness, the way it slips into and melts with guitars and drums is something to admire. It cannot also be stressed how it’s important to begin an album like this – to firmly grasp the listener’s attention from the get go – that is fully accomplished here. ‘Inertia’ is probably one of the most poetic songs regarding music and vocals on this album. The vocals are subdued growls and fit the dark, foreboding atmosphere infused with sadness and the way the strength and beauty of the song kicks in a feeling that accompanies it as its promised catharsis. That means that although the band started with this melancholia that will be present throughout, it’s not a weeping, weak at the knees and constantly blabbering kind. ‘Through the Shadows’ sees the riffs at times with folk turns, Niilo Sevänen growls into it to meet with some clean, more classic Heavy Metal vocals within the chorus line, giving it an epic flavour not to mention gets your head banging a bit, the aggressive part is just a superb touch within the whole song-pot. ‘Song of the Blackest Bird’ ushers in some doom heaviness which singles out and shows off the poetic bent of their lyrics. They are not on a higher level of let’s say MY DYING BRIDE or ISIS but they’re a good element of the whole album nevertheless.
‘Only One Who Waits’ is heavy, fast and will hammer you mercilessly. This album is said to be about “bereavement, grief and loss” this would be the rage part of that process. At this point it’s worthy to commend the album on the songs being sequence in a way to show off their diversity, whilst still creating a coherent whole to convey the meaning they set out to bring in. The interlude is a great juxtaposition to the central feeling and offers the fact that what they’re dealing with, they don’t see as a black and white issue but one beset with emotional complexity, not to mention that they bring in the melodic part back in. ‘Decoherence’ comes to me just as an opposite in a way it’s gentler, slow song, but in a way emotively joined to it as it brings in the cleansed feeling that the rage of losing someone is followed when it nears the closure and letting go stage. It’s a very beautiful song on top of that as well. ‘One For Sorrow’ closes the album superbly, it’s a very open song musically speaking, great vocals and vocal interaction between the clean and the growls.
Wonderfully moody album that can even bring a sense of catharsis and on a whole it presents music that can be enjoyed immensely regarding not just the moods it evokes powerfully but the way it flirts with other genres without making a mess out of it but rather something of a good quality release.
01. Inertia - 3:43
02. Through the Shadows - 4:31
03. Song of the Blackest Bird - 7:29
04. Only One Who Waits - 5:17
05. Unsung - 5:04
06. Every Hour Wounds - 5:25
07. Decoherence - 3:18
08. Lay the Ghost to Rest - 7:46
09. Regain the Fire - 4:27
10. One for Sorrow - 6:07
Niilo Sevänen – Vocals, bass
Ville Friman – Guitars
Ville Vänni – Guitars
Markus Hirvonen – Drums
www.insomnium.net / http://www.myspace.com/insomniumband
Total: 9 / 10