Rating:
9.0
Soulgrind - Into The Dark Vales Of Death
2002


01. Into The Dark
02. Lurid Circle
03. Rutjas Rapids Through The River Of The Otherworld
04. Odious Emotion
05. The Swan And The Fox
06. Dance Through The Macabre Void
07. Soulpanders
08. Beyond Good And Evil
09. Until Love Kills
10. Umpijään Taistelijat


The first time I heard Soulgrind was just before the gig of Ensiferum and Turisas at Nosturi (a Finnish music club). The samples on their website actually told nothing, so I just went to see how their live performance was. As they were just a support band for two very famous and amazing bands nothing special could have been expected. Anyway, when they began their set they really astounded me. I headbanged for them and definitely wanted to check them out after the gig.

Well, after that I immediately started looking for their albums and it took a whole three months to find one and even that was lucky.

The best side of this kind of music is that they have several totally different ways of using vocals. There's Lord Heikkinen doing growls, Miss W. Lilith doing amazing work with her clean female vocals and finally their drummer also does some choir vocals with Heikkinen. The guitar solos are good, the drumming works, everything is good. Still, on some of the songs there is something that makes them sound not too special. It sounds like they would have tried making all of the songs as good as the opening track "Lurid Circle," which combines all elements perfectly with a nice melody. Many of the songs just get left behind the others, when they try too much. Tracks often lose their spirit and melody like that. One more plus would be the keyboards, which create more darkness and melody in the music.

The closing track for the album should be mentioned like it would be one complete chapter of the album, "Umpijään Taistelijat." I will not try to translate the name simply because it would be too impossible without losing the "magic" of the name. This is one immediate thing that makes it differ from the other tracks, it's in Finnish. Another thing is that it is 13:15 long, so definitely made to be a completely different piece of music. Listening to it you can first hear some German vocals quietly, like whispers. After that it's all in Finnish. The song itself is quite simple for some time with a good structure then it all goes quiet and after two minutes begins something I could call a 'second part' of the song. It's a faster part with more aggressive drums and vocals, but also with an extremely bad quality of sound. As vocals sung in different languages always create more dimensions in music this was a very good song with a totally disappointing ending. However, the use of keyboards alone is excellent.

After this album Soulgrind released "Origin of The Paganblood," which I haven't heard yet. Now that they have released more than 5 albums, it is quite a wonder that they haven't got a lot of publicity. In case they don't want any, it is just a matter of time before they are going to get some.

All in all this album is definitely worth of checking out to any melodic metal fan who can hesitate growls and darkness, but for sure not for anyone who wants raw black metal.


 


written by Immortalist | 16.10.2005


Guest review disclaimer:
This is a guest review, which means it does not necessarily represent the point of view of the MS Staff.



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