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Terra Relicta Top 20 Of 2017



01. Au Champ Des Morts
- Dans La Joie
02. Peter Bjärgö
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03. Phallus Dei
- Black Dawn
04. Saille
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05. Black Anvil
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06. Heretoir
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07. Last Leaf Down
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08. Bitterfeldt
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09. Elegi
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10. Isenordal
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Sirenia - Perils Of The Deep Blue (2013) - Review

Band: Sirenia
Album title: Perils Of The Deep Blue
Release date: 28 June 2013
Label: Nuclear Blast Records

Tracklisting:
01. Ducere Me In Lucem
02. Seven Widows Weep
03. My Destiny Coming To Pass
04. Ditt Endelikt
05. Cold Caress
06. Darkling
07. Decadence
08. Stille Kom Døden
09. The Funeral March
10. Profound Scars
11. A Blizzard Is Storming
12. Chains [bonus]
13. Blue Colleen [bonus]

Morten Veland's second progeny (first being Tristania and the third Mortemia) is like a ship on a long journey over the seas: sometimes it flows smoothly and then it hits a harsh wave and almost sinks down. In other words: Sirenia’s discography has had its ups and downs (its biggest down being their previous release The Enigma Of Life) and fortunately, Perils Of The Deep Blue is one of its ups.

The album slowly opens with a serene and profound instrumental "Ducere Me In Lucem" and goes straight to powerful and rich in sound "Seven Widows Weep". This song shows Morten still knows how to make a vigorous gothic metal anthem. "Seven Widows Weep" has all the elements it needs: choirs, growls, harsh guitars and Ailyn’s beautiful vocals. At this point I must point out that Ailyn has never sounded better before and she really gave the performance of her life. She took her vocals to the limits and experimented with dramatic style, but always remained graceful. On the other hand, Morten’s growls are a wee bit disappointing on this record, as they lack depth and passion. Nonetheless, the combination of the two styles, accompanied with choirs is still giving this album its power.

As Mr. Veland has his distinctive style, I cannot really say this album does not have "Morten" written all over it. But it is a step forward on his path of composing and shows a lot more versatility. The songs flirt with electronic sounds by giving some heavy keyboard tunes, like for example on "Decadence" and "The Funeral March" and even with slower, a bit doomish rhythms on the epic "Stille Kom Døden". The surprise of Perils Of The Deep Blue must be "Ditt Engelikt", which features a fairly unknown singer, Joakim Næss, on clean vocals that carry out the song. Having a strong, catchy melody and Joakim's flawless performance it really brings the light to this album.

For those who enjoy the richness of sound brought on by the combination of melodic guitar riffs, keyboards and orchestrations, Perils Of The Deep Blue will be an enjoyment. The instrumental side of the album is nowhere near minimalistic, the vocals are emotional and the melodies have its smooth flow – especially in the second half of the album, so it is worth checking out the release with bonus tracks. Altogether, this record holds great energy and ambient. Perils Of The Deep Blue is definitely a record in Sirenia’s discography worth being proud of.

Review written by: Ines
Rating: 7,5/10

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Band: Amorphis
Album title: Under The Red Cloud
Release date: 4 September 2015
Label: Nuclear Blast Records

The new studio effort from the band brings us ten tracks, where we can find all of the most important elements that characterized Amorphis's music; there are tons of catchy melodic riffs, melancholic passages, folk insertions, aggressive and brutal parts, perfect guitar leads, progressive elements and yet much more. The sound is dense, in a way similar to the one on the previous album, but there's to be found kind of a dynamics that we were used to hear on their legendary album Elegy from 1996, and still there's that catchy melodic factor that was perfectly used before on almost each of their albums, but perfected for example on Skyforger (2009). Under The Red Cloud is maybe the most dynamic album the band released since 1996 and the ultimate proof for that comes already with the somehow typical new era Amorphis track - album titled opener, but nevertheless it shows that the band has enough courage to take everything one level higher. It has it all we should expect from the band of a such caliber, they sound more devoted into what they are doing than ever and the result is highly captivating, melodic, dense, versatile and surprisingly dark sound, which in my opinion has the power to bring also some new fans to their devoted fan base.

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