Release DetailsLABEL Spinefarm
RELEASED ON 8/23/2006
posted on 12/2006 By:
Entwine play an all too familiar brand of slickly produced gothic metal with crunchy riffs and a talented, if relatively ordinary sounding frontman. While none of this sounds entirely appealing, there is something refreshing about a band that understands its limitations and pushes its strongest elements to the forefront as successfully as Entwine manages on their fifth full-length, Fatal Design.
Singer Mika Tauriainen is convincingly emotive. While the lyrics are hardly groundbreaking, he sings with enough passion to get the point across through tone alone. Do yourself a favor and pay less attention to the lyrics themselves. You are going to get far more understanding of each song’s intention from listening to tone. All the blowhards complaining about the lack of quality clean vocals clearly haven’t invested any time in modern gothic metal, because there are plenty of singers with gifted pipes today. Tauriainen is one of them. Sure, he’s not as commanding as a Peter Steele or as eloquent as a Jonas Renkse, but he has a knack for hitting the right pitch at the right moment, and sometimes that is all you need.
The songs themselves are short and sweet. No long, drawn-out slow sections. Everything is fairly mid-paced and entirely enjoyable. The riffs are the simple, rock-oriented goth metal staple we have all become familiar with the last few years from bands like Lacuna Coil (especially the crunch of their latest effort) and Theatre of Tragedy. Neither as rough around the edges as Poisonblack’s latest nor as soft as Lacrimas Profundere’s Filthy Notes for Frozen Hearts, Fatal Design falls somewhere in the middle of the road, where it quite stealthily avoids persecution to find a safe corner to depress itself under a light rain shower. When I listen to Katatonia, I get this itchy feeling in my throat and I feel a sudden urge to get introspective. I don’t get that same feeling here because the music doesn’t suck me in like an “I am Nothing” or an “Evidence”. Those songs are expertly crafted odes to self-deprecation with moments that scream emotion. These are whimpers in comparison, albeit entirely respectable ones. Songs like “Break Me” and “Twisted” will capture your attention but they won’t twist your brain in the same way that songs from some of the less straightforward goth bands are capable of doing.
By all means, if you like gothic metal, give these guys a shot. They are chock-full of talent and Tauriainen is a compelling vocalist. Don’t expect a renaissance and you’ll be impressed. Casual goths should approach with caution, but seasoned pros should charge ahead with the vigor of a voracious vamp.
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