October Tide - A Thin Shell
28 September 2010

01. The Custodian Of Science
02. Deplorable Request
03. A Nighttime Project
04. Blackness Devours
05. The Dividing Line
06. Fragile
07. Scorned

And on the seventh day God didn't actually rest, he let Katatonia create an album concealing all euphoria and calmness, Brave Murder Day; and he saw that it was good. And God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Katatonia and they slept: and he took one of their ribs and closed up the flesh instead thereof. And the rib, which God had taken from the band, made he October Tide and brought them unto the earth.

When Katatonia dismissed their more extreme form of desolation and bleakness and embraced their clean-vocal path, October Tide seemed like a spring of life (no matter how contradictive this may sound) to all the pre-Discouraged Ones era fans. And how couldn't all these melancholic souls be happy since Fredrik Norrman and Jonas Renkse were part of the band, definitely knowing what they were after. They proved it with Rain Without End and Grey Dawn.

Everything seemed happy (hah) in the Katatonia camp, until one day the Norrman brothers left for their own reasons. Fred although set back on track the October Tide doom/death metal machine with a new line-up and In Mourning's Tobias Netzell on vocals. Everything you asked for is here, actually you know what to expect, a combination of heavier riffing and more melodic harmonies adorning the soundscape with this bittersweet aura we all loved, distressing our tranquility along with the imposing rhythm section. Tobias Netzell stands with pride behind the microphone lending some awesome and powerful deep grunts that often reach a more shrieking vibe, an excellent choice to fill in the empty shell of vocal disheartenment.

The production is very good and this helps the compositions show their real face in full force with the band striking as one like a fist of raging pain. Yet, we've seen this play before, but anyway, they never promised something different, they know who they are, they know what they want to offer, we know what we want and we like it. So where's the problem? Actually nowhere and A Thin Shell is this this type of album that won't make you feel depressed or something, it's true, it holds loads of emotion, but through anger, seven straight to your face doom/death metal compositions that will keep you intense and distressing company for about 40 minutes without forgetting to flirt with melody.

I'd like to see them progress their sound in the future though, if they continue anyway, an album in this vein was more than fair enough as a come-back, to make the ones who already know remember and the new ones find out. As for now, A Thin Shell is a good album to stick around and remember once again tales from an album that let its mark in the scene almost 15 years ago.

Highlights: "Deplorable Request", "The Dividing Line", "A Custodian Of Science", the psychedelic aura of "The Nighttime Project".

Performance: 10
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 9

Band profile: October Tide
Album: A Thin Shell


Written on 30.09.2010 by
"It is myself I have never met, whose face is pasted on the underside of my mind."
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Merchant of Doom - 01.10.2010 at 13:10  
Not a bad album, but they sound like In Mourning now (which isn't a bad thing, IMO...).
Aeox - 01.10.2010 at 18:01  
Brilliant album, somber expression and colossal sound.
Thanntos - 02.10.2010 at 21:53  
Good album but not perfect by any means, not the best doom of the year. It struggled to hold my interest the first time around but after repeated listens its a slow grower.
Agree with rating.
Lovecraft - 03.10.2010 at 14:30  
Nice intro.
I haven't heard their older stuff. Is it better?
DerRozzengarten - 03.10.2010 at 14:36  
Written by Guest on 03.10.2010 at 14:30

Nice intro.
I haven't heard their older stuff. Is it better?

Well, in my opion yeah, they are, try them in chronological order if you want, try first Rain Without End (it was re-released almost recently since it was a hell of hard to be found, if not at all), then Grey Dawn, then the new one.

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