Across The Dark
posted on 9/2009 By:
It's ironic that I write my review of Insomnium’s fourth album the same week that Be’lakor’s second album also gets reviewed as there are a lot of similarities between the two acts; both ply a melancholic strain of atmospheric, melodic death metal with hints of delicate but rending doom metal layered under the harmonic textures and synths. And both are amazing albums, but with their fourth effort, after two masterful albums in 2004's watershed sophomore album Since the Day it All Came Down and 2006's masterul Above the Weeping World, Insomnium have truly entered elite status and delivered an album so good, it hurts.
With a now typically Finnish backbone that certainly culls from the likes of Rapture, Amorphis, Swallow the Sun (whose Aleksi Munter provide guest keyboards on this album) and such, Insomnium have elevated their songwriting skills from the already stunning back catalog and dropped an album full of such knee wilting, somber melody and lush atmospheres, it literally cries for your rapt attention and most certainly will be atop many critics' top ten lists for 2009.
While certainly dropping some of their more doom-ish elements from the middle two albums, Insomnium, while now more of a melodic death metal act have still flocked their gruff, robust Finnish hues with a sense of despondent grandiosity and a somber sense of austere atmospherics. Partly due to the increased synths, some rending clean vocals (provided by Enemy of the Sun’s Jules Näveri) and Niilo Sevänen’s perfectly pained roar, the withered heart of Insomnium lies in their layered textured riffage that cuts straight to the soul.
Even the album’s two minute opening intro, “Equivalence” is a simply stunning entrance for the album before “Down With the Sun” greets the listener with a main chorus that simply personifies beautiful sadness. Each track, from the more up tempo trio of “Where the Last Wave Broke,” “Into the Woods” and surprisingly urgent “Against the Stream” to the despondent hues of “Weighed Down With Sorrow” and the sumptuously, epic 9 minute standout “Lay of the Autumn,” Across the Dark simply drips high class and lush, yet tearstained atmospherics at every single turn. There is literally not a single weak note on the album.
The whole stupendous affair is glossed in a lavish but hefty, typically Finnish production that allows the sapping layers to breathe (or sigh and gasp more like) and elicit an emotional response with each note, riff, and growl making Across the Dark a certified contender for album of the year.
Register to post comments.
One For Sorrow
Above The Weeping World
Since The Day It All Came Down