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Tag Archive: Spinefarm Records


Kalmah – Seventh Swamphony

Kalmah-Seventh-SwamphonyKalmah

Seventh Swamphony

01. Seventh Swamphony
02. Deadfall
03. Pikemaster
04. Hollo
05. Windlake Tale
06. Wolves on the Throne
07. Black Marten´s Trace
08. The Trapper

[07/17/13]
[Spinefarm Records]

Kalmah‘s fascination with Finland’s endless swamp lands continues on their seventh album, the whimsically titled, Seventh Swamphony. Hailing from the northern city of Oulu, the Kokko brothers and Co. have an abundance of natural water bodies around them from which they can draw influence. This was clear as early as their 2000 debut album Swamplord and thirteen years later, after a couple of releases with gradually dwindling swamp references, the influence of the Finnish landscape takes over once again. The production on Seventh Swamphony wisely strays away from the modern, over-polished and over-used melodic death metal sound. This is a good thing because it gives the guitars a raw sound that is complemented quite decently by the keyboards.

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Chthonic – Bú-Tik

Chthonic - Bú-TikChthonic

Bú-Tik

01. Arising Armament (Intro)
02. Supreme Pain for the Tyrant
03. Sail Into the Sunset’s Fire
04. Next Republic
05. Rage of My Sword
06. Between Silence and Death
07. Resurrection Pyre
08. Set Fire to the Island
09. Defenders of Bu-Tik Palace
10. Undying Rearmament (Outro)

[06/25/13]
[Spinefarm]

Taiwanese symphonic black metal band Chthonic are an interesting bunch. They’ve had a devoted cult following which can be attributed to their fairly unique sound and aesthetic (and perhaps the fact that they’re one of the few well-known metal bands from Taiwan). Nearly two decades from their formation, they’ve recently gained worldwide fame after signing to Spinefarm Records in 2009. Bu-Tik is their third album on Spinefarm, and their seventh overall. The band have stated that this album is supposed to be a blend of their previous three albums. While it doesn’t contain a lot of black metal influences unlike the band’s older albums, it’s still very interesting and a fine album.

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Shining – Redefining Darkness

Shining

Redefining Darkness

01. Du, Mitt Konstverk
02. The Ghastly Silence
03. Han Som Hatar Människan
04. Hail Darkness Hail
05. Det Stora Grå
06. For the God Below

[10/29/12]
[Spinefarm Records]

For nearly two decades, the depressive black metal outfit Shining and its indomitable leader Nikolas Kvarforth have been a mainstay in the black metal scene, becoming one of the most recognized and controversial outfits in the metal-verse. Their blend of  emotionally raw, depressive black metal and sludgy mid-tempo doom riffs are almost unmistakable, and have lead the band to great critical success over the course of seven full length albums. Redefining Darkness isn’t an all together misleading title, as this is a different sonic landscape for Kvarforth and company, but it probably isn’t the type of redefinition most people were expecting.

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In Mourning – The Weight Of Oceans

In Mourning

The Weight of Oceans

01. Colossus
02. A Vow To Conquer The Ocean
03. From A Tidal Sleep
04. Celestial Tear
05. Convergence
06. Sirens
07. Isle Of Solace
08. The Drowning Sun
09. Voyage Of A Wavering Mind

[04/24/12]
[Spinefarm Records]

Many years ago, Sweden gave heavy metal fans everywhere a new type of music to enjoy. From the likes of Dark Tranquility, At The Gates, and In Flames, melodic death metal soon took the metal community by storm. Slaughter of the Soul, some may argue, is THE melodic death metal record, one that will never be beaten and nearly impossible to match. Around the same time, Opeth was redefining death metal by including clean acoustic passages interwoven with blast beats and growling vocals comparative to some or the finest death metal out at the time. Many years later, bands like Daylight Dies and Elysian are carrying the torch alongside the godfathers of melodeath. One Swedish quintet, however, have taken the necessary steps to create what may be their own magnum opus in The Weight Of Oceans.

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Soen – Cognitive

Soen

Cognitive

01. Fraktal
02. Fraccions
03. Delenda
04. Last Light
05. Oscillation
06. Canvas
07. Ideate
08. Purpose
09. Slithering
10. Savia

[02/14/12]
[Spinefarm Records]

Supergroups are often looked at in the high hopes that they turn out to be more than the sum of their parts in a perfect blend on influences from past works. As we’ve seen in the past, this isn’t usually the case. Expectations are always quite high and the end result is never really what everyone was hoping it would be. Enter Soen, a semi-supergroup of sorts featuring two high profile musicians, drummer Martin Lopez (ex-Opeth, ex-Amon Amarth) and bassist Steve DiGiorgio (ex-Death, ex-Testament, Charred Walls of the Damned). Rounded out by the lesser known Joel Ekelöf and guitarist Kim Platbarzdis, Soen are a progressive rock band that aren’t exactly simply the sum of their parts, but an almost direct carbon-copy of the collective work of others.

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 Swallow the Sun

Emerald Forest And The Blackbird

01. Emerald Forest And The Blackbird
02. This Cut Is The Deepest
03. Hate, Lead The Way
04. Cathedral Walls (feat. Anette Olzon)
05. Hearts Wide Shut
06. Silent Towers
07. Labyrinth Of London (Horror Pt. IV)
08. Of Death And Corruption
09. April 14th
10. Night Will Forgive Us

[02/14/12]
[Spinefarm Records]

In terms of innovation and experimentation the genres of doom and melodic death metal aren’t exactly pushing the envelope now-a-days. As with several other genres there seems to be a stint of stagnation going around. It’s a shame, but it’s hard to ignore. Each year album after album is released that just feels like the same thing that’s been heard before. Everything feels recycled and phoned in, and no one wants to try something new, and it really is something worth bitching about. However, sometimes you have to just accept the fact that some albums can be outrageously good, even without all that much innovation. Emerald Forest and The Blackbird, Swallow the Sun’s fifth full length album sounds exactly like any fan of their previous works would expect, but somehow that doesn’t seem like a bad thing, and it just proves that these musicians can still entertain, even if they’re not changing or reinventing anything.

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The new Swallow the Sun album, Emerald Forest And The Blackbird (due out February 1st on Spinefarm Records), is now up for streaming on this nifty Finnish site. The tracks are accompanied by quotes taken from the songs, picked by guitarist Juha Raivio. Have yourself a grand time with such uplifting jams!

-MW

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