Rating:
N/A
Tiamat - The Scarred People
31 October 2012


01. The Scarred People
02. Winter Dawn
03. 384 - Kteis
04. Radiant Star
05. The Sun Also Rises
06. Before Another Wilbury Dies
07. Love Terrorists
08. Messinian Letter
09. Thunder & Lightning
10. Tiznit
11. Born To Die [Lana del Rey cover] [bonus]
12. The Red Of The Morning Sun
13. Paradise [Bruce Springsteen cover] [bonus]
14. Divided [live] [bonus]
15. Cain [live] [bonus]


At first I was excited. Overly so. I mean, a new Tiamat album is up for grabs. Once again it's taken the band a long time for another release to come out. I listened, and I liked what I heard. Then, after a while, I was considerably less enthusiastic about it, which is not to say outright disinterested. Now, after even more time has passed I'm wallowing in the territories of "Aw, shit, I don't know..."

What I just outlined is oftentimes a phase I'm going through with bands I've been listening to for years and years. At some point down the road the listening experience seems to transcend any meaningful boundaries of quality and with that comes a sort of acceptance of music just for what it is - new music by the artist you love. Oh, you'll still most definitely spot a turd if it comes along. You'll spot it and you'll hate it. However, as long as some close to average standard is maintained, as long as you find familiar guitar tunes, melodies, vocals, mood, etc, that tie it all together with the rest of the works, it'll be fine.

This appears to be the case with the new Tiamat album. It's... a new Tiamat album. It's... by Tiamat. OK, I really am doing it injustice describing it this way but it is what is. If you take Amanethes as a reference, it's in a way a continuation. It brings up some similar emotions. However, it's quite a bit, I don't know, smoother? I think that might be a good word to associate with this album. It's considerably calmer and smoother. I would even go so far as to say it feels peaceful.

When I was at a low point with my opinion of The Scarred People, I tried to figure out what there is to this album at all. Slowly, step by step I rediscovered what sparkled my initial excitement. I'll leave aside Johan Edlund's voice, which is a given. I already mentioned smoothness. Then, I found that I immensely enjoy twists in guitar-work, from occasional and base riffs forming the backbone of songs to high profile solos. The more I pay attention to individual songs, the more I find the layer that I so enjoy. Along with guitars, come the passages in the songs that I wish were explored and exploited more. Suddenly, I feel good about this album again.

However, once in a while I chance on elements that reference back to older albums: birds chirping, reminiscent of Wildhoney, "Radiant Star" or "The Red of the Morning Sun" starting out as something off A Deeper Kind of Slumber. Such flashbacks make me wish it was all that kind of stuff. And that's the moment I realise I'm back in limbo... As far as the album goes, it's a good Tiamat album, smooth and pretty even. The only song that really feels off the pace is "Thunder & Lightning." The rest does feel like a whole.


Band profile: Tiamat
Album: The Scarred People


 



Written on 28.10.2012 by
Ivor
I shoot people.

Sometimes, I also write about it.
More reviews by Ivor ››



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Dani5050 - 29.10.2012 at 06:06  
Can't wait to listen to it, interesting review.
Ag Fox - 29.10.2012 at 06:16  
Thumbs-up. Not that interested in the album or band, but great read
netZach - 29.10.2012 at 17:54  
Their best since "A Deeper Kind of Slumber" (they will likely never surpass that one) and as a whole on par but/or slightly less interesting than Wildhoney. This is simply put a good time to be a Tiamat fan (bear in mind this hasn't happened in over 10 years)!
Warman - 29.10.2012 at 19:00  
Nice review and I'll probably share your thoughts when I get the album. It's probably good and all, but the fact that it's a familiar Tiamat sound will probably make it appear better than it really is. But hey, that's probably the case with all music.
Daniell - 30.10.2012 at 10:33  
Just like "Amanethes", this album has a few great songs, while the rest is average and, sadly, a letdown. Which is not surprising, because the last Tiamat album that was solid from start to finish was released in 1999. When will Tiamat rise above the rating of 7 again?
Marcel Hubregtse - 30.10.2012 at 11:00  
Written by Daniell on 30.10.2012 at 10:33

When will Tiamat rise above the rating of 7 again?


the last time they managed that was in 1994
Daniell - 30.10.2012 at 11:08  
I beg to differ. For me A Deeper Kind of Slumber is brilliant, a 9.5 surely. Skeleton Skeletron is completely different, but very solid nevertheless. Only later did Tiamat start showing signs of fatigue. Prey and Judas Christ have weaker moments, but they shine in other moments. I'm a fan of Tiamat, and I dig their more gothic side that started on Skeleton Skeletron. I can understand why you don't...
Slayer666 - 02.11.2012 at 23:18  
Pretty average stuff. Simplistic, forced, cheesy and not very interesting goth rock. Not exactly bad, per se, but I don't really see the point of listening to it.
nocty - 07.11.2012 at 02:34  
Awesoemoness greatness,this is what i want from one of my favorite essential bands in 2012,now.i dunno,i grew up with wildhoney and clouds but its great to hear them play and write great songs again ,its like they found their style again and nailed it prety good. 9/10 from me
Vengeance - 29.12.2012 at 14:59  
There was something very natural about the change between Prey and Amanethes. Prey being the most solid of their 1997-2003 run. Then Amanethes went back to the bands sources whilst bringing in some very serene and psychadelic influences. It was a gutsy album and I loved it. The Scarred People is very layered but sounds like a rehash of the aforementioned run... I find the two live bonuses from Prey to be far better than the original new tracks presnted in this album.
trez0r - 30.04.2013 at 20:57  
I'm a long time fan of Mr. Endlund's creativity and as such this record does not dissapoint. A real grower I'd say. Personal favorites for me are Winter Dawn and Love Terrorists though I must say I really enjoy any of the songs here. Sure 9 from me!

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