|Mar De Grises - The Tatterdemalion Express
30 January 2004
01. El Otro
02. To See Saturn Fall
05. Self Portrait No1
06. Be Welcome Oh Hideous Hell
Is widely known that if you want to hear some good Doom Metal bands, you have to turn your head over Firebox Records, this Finnish label has been releasing top-notch Doom Metal bands for a while now.
Now, in a smart move, they signed Chilean act Mar De Grises, and released their first full-length album , "The Tatterdemalion Express".
Chile, along with Brazil is one of the strongest Heavy Metal scenes here in South America, and the greatest thing of the Chilean scene is that you can find almost every genre of Metal under their streets, from Gothic to Doom.
Along with their compatriots Poema Arcanus (featured and reviewed in this site), Mar De Grises carries the South American Doom Metal flag, and like Poema Arcanus, they succeed with honors in such endeavor.
As soon the Cd arrived to me, I was very excited in listening and reviewing the debut of my South American brothers, and let me tell you that I wasn't disappointed.
First of all, the band has improved a lot visually, the logo and the Cd art is gorgeous, a truly eye-catcher.
Musically, Mar De Grises plays a Progressive Doom Metal, with a wide range of influences, like Rock and classical music, but the structure of the band is a very solid Doom-Death Metal.
Seven lengthy songs show us the broad variety of musical tastes that these guys possess, from a rough start with "El Otro" (The Other), we know that we're not dealing with one of those super-slow Doom bands that repeat the same riffs for 15 minutes, Mar De Grises have long songs, but know how to take advantage of the time to create so many atmospheres in one song.
"To See Saturn Fall" contains harmonic structures and fast paced tempo entangled in a web of distorted guitars, all of this suddenly stops to give room to a fantastic intermezzo, emotional clean singing takes place in this clean break.
Slow start we get with "Storm", this song slowly builds up on accords and background noises, to finally develop into this slow and pounding-riff driven masterpiece.
Nice classical piano takes the lead on "Recklessness", this song is full of clean singing, emotional and deep voice of Marcelo Rodriguez is one of the best assets of this band.
Have you ever imagined Beethoven playing dark, sinister music? Well, just listen to "Self Portrait No1" a instrumental piano piece, so dark yet so romantic at the same time.
Last 2 tracks, represent the black and the white, one aggressive and dismal, the other slow and self-indulgent, perfect way to close an album, a whisper that fades away…
I'm not joking when I said that this Cd is a must have for any fan of Doom Metal, if you doubt how good can it be a Doom Metal band from Chile or South America in general, you have one of the best expositors right here, so please do yourself a favor and check them out, and after you're done with The Tatterdemalion Express, try some Poema Arcanus.
Makes me proud to see such talented bands emerging from neighbor countries like Chile, bands like this demonstrates that South America has a lot to offer to the world, and labels like Firebox does great on giving a chance to these kind of acts.