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Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Review: Lachrymose - Carpe Noctum

From Greece cometh drama. Economic drama is bad, musical drama might be good. Lachrymose (latin for ´tears´), not be be confused with the German Lacrimosa, is a new gothic doom metal band. And that in itself is already quite a challenge. Can you, after bands like Theatre of Tragedy, Nightwish, Epica, and so many more bands, give new life to this genre. Blackmass, well-known for his work in Rotting Flesh, apparently thinks he can.

And, to be honest, the band produces almost 50 minutes of nice music, mainly carried by the voice of female vocalist Hel. The album starts with a nice introduction, creating a haunted, doomy atmosphere that reminded me of Halloween coming up in just a few months.. Then the first song, False God comes in with a heavy start, building up to a little disappointing introduction of singer Hel. We are probably spoiled by vocals of Sharon, Tarja, Floor and who else. In a way it reminds of the old Nightwish, where Tarja does not use her soprano voice. It sounds like a pressed alto/soprano.

Luckily the first song is not a representative of the rest of the album. The second song has more room the soprano voice that fits with this type of music, where Hel changes her register of voice more often, like in the rest of the songs. Although Hels voice is the most prominent on this album, Blackmass´ harsh vocals are one of the best I have ever heard in gothic metal. Truly convincing evil sounds this man can produce. Why did the band not choose to give this voice more stage in the songs.

The song Face of Horror, does, luckily. It is a powerful song that uses different rhythms and speeds. The next song Carpe Noctum has a pretentious feel . The band seems to want too much, in one song. When Hel sings ´I´m losing you´, she really is losing my attention.

In a Reverie brings up guest vocalist Thomas Vikström, Therions vocalist, also known for his work with Candlemass and Stormwind. His vocals are not my piece of cake, but the voice does fit with song very well. A hard rock metal song where the drums lift up the song and Thomas, Hel and Blackmass all have their vocals in the right place, in the right height. It is the most appealing song of the album, although the last song, Thyella, after the do-we-really-need-this-too-high-soprano-scream, rocks away in a nice way.

All in all, the album is not putting any new life, nor any novelties in this genre, it does gives a solid shot of gothic metal like we already were familiar with. The great vocals of Blackmass do give this album extra points!

Like a band in the corner of them metal universe is supposed to do, the very last song is the ´outro´. It is a surprisingly nice one, though. No orchestral decorum, just an acoustic guitar, that in the end gets more electrical. After the Halloween feeling at the beginning of the album, the building up to some nice songs, the tunes of Fade gives us the final feeling of bliss that everything might work out fine for Greece.

Written by Martijn Bakker

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