Rating:
9.8
Lacuna Coil - Comalies
29 October 2002


01. Swamped
02. Heaven's A Lie
03. Daylight Dancer
04. Humane
05. Self Deception
06. Aeon
07. Tight Rope
08. The Ghost Woman And The Hunter
09. Unspoken
10. Entwined
11. The Prophet Said
12. Angel's Punishment
13. Comalies
14. Lost Lullaby [bonus]


The 2002 album Comalies is purportedly the most well-known album of gothic rock luminaries Lacuna Coil. It seems that nearly everyone I know who has given this disc a spin has enjoyed it to, at least, some significant degree. Indeed, when frontwoman Cristina Scabbia was inquired on her favourite Lacuna Coil song, she replied with "all of the songs on Comalies."

As an introductory note, I'd like to express the idea that I don't technically consider Lacuna Coil to be a metal band. Their drumming isn't particularly fast, there are no growling/shrieking vocals, and they do sound a bit "mainstream-ish." I do, however, consider them to be top-notch rock artists. In any case, if you seek brutally aggressive, brain-addling, rape-me-with-sandpaper-condoms metal music that leaves you in a pool of your own blood and other bodily fluids, then give this album a miss.

Now what, if one may pose the obvious question, qualifies Comalies to receive a perfect rating from me?

Perhaps the most distinct factor is the sheer catchiness of the songs. The music is composed in such a way that simply remains stuck in your head, with individual tracks like "Swamped," "Daylight Dancer," and "Unspoken," to name merely a few. Regarding the instrumentation, the band employs fine usage of both acoustic and electric guitar work, as well as mixing a bit of experimentation compared to the band's precedent albums. This frequently takes the form of synthesizers and interesting vocal editing, which can, for example, both be found at the beginning of "Humane" as well as throughout the rest of the songs generally.

The vocals are also much better than the average band out there. Cristina Scabbia is personally one of my favourite vocalists, which I can perhaps attribute to her uniquely transcendent voice (which is conspicuously exemplified on the semi-intermezzo track "Aeon"). Additionally, male singer Andrea Ferro's voice is undoubtedly the perfect secondary to Scabbia's solid, clear-cut (and somewhat deep for a woman) vocal melodies. This is indubitably one of Lacuna Coil's strongest points: the ability to use the male/female combinational singing very proficiently. Both have have certainly progressed and matured as singers since the time of their first release, the 1998 Lacuna Coil EP.

I would recommend Comalies to anyone who has liked any other Lacuna Coil album, or rock music broadly (I think musically they may be categorized very well with other talented rock bands such as Disturbed, The Birthday Massacre, Godsmack, Evanescence, or post-1998 Within Temptation). As well, anyone who enjoys female-fronted metal bands like Nightwish or The Gathering may want to give this album a venture. Just be forewarned that you may find yourself replaying the memorable melodies in your head for the rest of the day.

Performance: 10
Songwriting: 10
Originality: 8
Production: 10


Band profile: Lacuna Coil
Album: Comalies


 


written by Sleeping Dragon | 13.08.2010


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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Elodie Artour - 13.08.2010 at 23:35  
What a review, Sleeping Dragon! Congrats, man! I really enjoyed reading it. Lacuna Coil is one of my favourite bands and "Comalies" is my favourite piece by them. I'm still not quite sure whether it's their best album or not, but that doesn't change the fact I love every single song on it and can even relate many of them to myself. If it comes to melodies, LC have always been good at writing beautiful music. Some of their songs remind me a bit of typical Italian music (they're Italians, after all) . As for Cristina's voice, I find it distinct and sort of unique. She's definitely among my favourite female singers and she sounds different compared with many others. Having her in the band is a huge advantage for the music itself. However, I don't consider Andrea Ferro to be a good vocal. The combination between Cristina's and Andrea's voices works pretty well but I still hope that one day, Lacuna Coil will get a better male vocal. Andrea doesn't actually sound that bad in the studio. According to many live videos of the band I've seen, however, he doesn't really do such a good job at concerts. Otherwise, I find him a nice and sympathetic guy.

Lacuna Coil is probably not a metal band and that's another part of their uniqueness - their style is not easily defined. Back in the day, Lacuna's music sounded beautiful and poetic. Money was seemingly still not the biggest issue in their career. On the other hand, "Comalies" is very well made production-wise which alone gives a clue of a "mainstream-ish" perspective for the band. If nowadays somebody listens firstly to their last two records and goes back to their previous ones afterwards, they'll definitely be amazed by the astonishing and dramatical change of the music.

"Comalies" highlights: "Aeon" (mainly because of Cristina's unique performance on it) , "Humane" (definitely one of the best tracks off the record) and "Angel's Punishment" (the choir suits the dramatic aura of the song pretty well) .
vezzy - 14.08.2010 at 11:31  
Written by Elodie Artour on 13.08.2010 at 23:35

What a review, Sleeping Dragon! Congrats, man! I really enjoyed reading it. Lacuna Coil is one of my favourite bands and "Comalies" is my favourite piece by them. I'm still not quite sure whether it's their best album or not, but that doesn't change the fact I love every single song on it and can even relate many of them to myself. If it comes to melodies, LC have always been good at writing beautiful music. Some of their songs remind me a bit of typical Italian music (they're Italians, after all) . As for Cristina's voice, I find it distinct and sort of unique. She's definitely among my favourite female singers and she sounds different compared with many others. Having her in the band is a huge advantage for the music itself. However, I don't consider Andrea Ferro to be a good vocal. The combination between Cristina's and Andrea's voices works pretty well but I still hope that one day, Lacuna Coil will get a better male vocal. Andrea doesn't actually sound that bad in the studio. According to many live videos of the band I've seen, however, he doesn't really do such a good job at concerts. Otherwise, I find him a nice and sympathetic guy.

Lacuna Coil is probably not a metal band and that's another part of their uniqueness - their style is not easily defined. Back in the day, Lacuna's music sounded beautiful and poetic. Money was seemingly still not the biggest issue in their career. On the other hand, "Comalies" is very well made production-wise which alone gives a clue of a "mainstream-ish" perspective for the band. If nowadays somebody listens firstly to their last two records and goes back to their previous ones afterwards, they'll definitely be amazed by the astonishing and dramatical change of the music.

"Comalies" highlights: "Aeon" (mainly because of Cristina's unique performance on it) , "Humane" (definitely one of the best tracks off the record) and "Angel's Punishment" (the choir suits the dramatic aura of the song pretty well) .


Holy hell, that's some inhuman fascination with a rock band.

Good review though, I liked your style, but after I got Shallow Life, I completely gave up on listening to anything else by them.
Lachy - 14.08.2010 at 12:08  
I must say this is my favorite album by them. I think its the darkest one they have released. While you are on the topic of shallow life does anyone think the guitar tone is similar to linkin park. BTW dont listen to linkin park anyone coz they suck
Elodie Artour - 14.08.2010 at 17:00  
@VezzyRattlehead: Thanks a lot, man! I sincerely hope it doesn't sound subjective. I guess the only releases I'm good at making reviews of are the ones by female fronted bands.
Sleeping Dragon - 15.08.2010 at 09:47  
Written by Elodie Artour on 13.08.2010 at 23:35

What a review, Sleeping Dragon! Congrats, man! I really enjoyed reading it. Lacuna Coil is one of my favourite bands and "Comalies" is my favourite piece by them. I'm still not quite sure whether it's their best album or not, but that doesn't change the fact I love every single song on it and can even relate many of them to myself. If it comes to melodies, LC have always been good at writing beautiful music. Some of their songs remind me a bit of typical Italian music (they're Italians, after all) . As for Cristina's voice, I find it distinct and sort of unique. She's definitely among my favourite female singers and she sounds different compared with many others. Having her in the band is a huge advantage for the music itself. However, I don't consider Andrea Ferro to be a good vocal. The combination between Cristina's and Andrea's voices works pretty well but I still hope that one day, Lacuna Coil will get a better male vocal. Andrea doesn't actually sound that bad in the studio. According to many live videos of the band I've seen, however, he doesn't really do such a good job at concerts. Otherwise, I find him a nice and sympathetic guy.

Lacuna Coil is probably not a metal band and that's another part of their uniqueness - their style is not easily defined. Back in the day, Lacuna's music sounded beautiful and poetic. Money was seemingly still not the biggest issue in their career. On the other hand, "Comalies" is very well made production-wise which alone gives a clue of a "mainstream-ish" perspective for the band. If nowadays somebody listens firstly to their last two records and goes back to their previous ones afterwards, they'll definitely be amazed by the astonishing and dramatical change of the music.

"Comalies" highlights: "Aeon" (mainly because of Cristina's unique performance on it) , "Humane" (definitely one of the best tracks off the record) and "Angel's Punishment" (the choir suits the dramatic aura of the song pretty well) .


Thanks for the positive feedback. :] I don't really mind if particular music "sounds" mainstreamish, provided that it's well-written and well-composed. Actually, "Swamped" is occasionally played on a local hard rock station here.

And speaking of here (where I live), Lacuna Coil has a habit of coming and playing at various places quite often in my city (usually once a year). I'm not a frequent concert-goer, but perhaps next time they're in town I'll go see them live...
Sleeping Dragon - 15.08.2010 at 10:05  
Written by Guest on 14.08.2010 at 12:08

I must say this is my favorite album by them. I think its the darkest one they have released. While you are on the topic of shallow life does anyone think the guitar tone is similar to linkin park. BTW dont listen to linkin park anyone coz they suck


It does sound a bit similar. Their songwriting isn't getting any better, either (I think they can be a bit more poetic and creative than having a song title named "I Like It").

Due to the fact that I grew up listening to Linkin Park, I have some emotional/nostalgic connections with their music... and although I've certainly moved on in regards to my music tastes and preferences, I honestly do not think their music is too bad. (Hybrid Theory and Meteora anyway.)

Or you can simply say my mind was ruthlessly indoctrinated as a child, since I was ten when Hybrid Theory was released. Your call. :p
Lachy - 16.08.2010 at 14:14  
Well the first two albums LP released were good but after that they went shit. I grew up with them two but i dont really listen to them anymore
Wishmaster - 17.08.2010 at 21:47  
I think this album is their best, I enjoyed it. Well done on the review!

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