Shape Of Despair - Shades Of... review



Reviewer:
9.3

143 users:
8.50
Band: Shape Of Despair
Album: Shades Of...
Release date: 2000


01. ...In The Mist
02. Woundheir
03. Down Into The Stream
04. Shadowed Dreams
05. Sylvan-Night


Shape Of Despair, one of the few bands that unfolds in front of the very eyes of the listener the true faces of despair, parading one by one in front of his fearful eyes. "Shades Of…" is the first part of their bleeding legacy and despite the fact it is a debut album, it is a real masterpiece filling your hollow hours with moments of grief and pure bitterness with its lengthy compositions.

The guitar riffing is ultra slow and deeply mourning, being a bit on the background but evoking an obscure funeral feeling in the air. The floating keyboard melodies, along with the atmosphere-evoking flute pieces and female vocals that enter at times, that echo from beyond to disappear at times and then come back to life once again with the shadows, harmonize wonderfully with the deep grunting voice of the singer evoking a serene feeling of anger, bleakness and dismay; like a nightmare you're into, you're drowning but you love it…

"In here, every shadow in the ground passes me by… slow…"

"…In the Mist" opens the album and this is where you lose yourself, "in the mist", where memories dance with bitterness, where forlorn shadows kiss you softly draining all life from your bleeding body as the mourning riffing echos in a threatening way whereas the keyboard melodies bring this sweet nightmare to life interpreted in the most appropriate way by the grieving deep grunting voice of the signer. The journey through the mist goes on with "Woundheir" and you realize that "wound was the heir, the ruler within fire" as the flute's bittersweet sound evokes a feeling of solitude in the emotionally burdened atmosphere. The guitars echo from the deepest abyss along with the obscure percussion sounds and the singer's utterly descriptive penetrating grunts and obscure distorted recites interpreting twisted lyrics filled with anger float in the heavy air.

"Shadowed Dreams" keep on haunting every single moment of your life as the album goes on. The distinctive female vocals harmonize in utter bleakness with the mourning guitar riffing and the bitter sound of the flute whilst the singer interprets in utter greatness lyrics of pure poetry and solitude traveling you somewhere else, "to another world, to another consciousness, away of this time" "and you do watch with broken eyes how this weather forever will stay in your frozen heart". And you flow "Down Into the Stream" as pain blackens your horizon with the serene doleful keyboard melodies dancing macabre with your dying sight pacing wonderfully with the female vocals and the deep male grunts accompanied by the lurking guitar riffing evoking a feeling of sweet dismay and rising pain in the air leading to the closing theme of "Shades Of…" as "Sylvan-Night" comes to stay bringing forth its most shameful shadows. The atmosphere that floats in the air is the same as if you were lost in a forest of shadows and mist finding yourself "painfully wrapped in leafs" evoked in the most ideal way by the marriage of female vocals and keyboard melodies flirting wonderfully with the wailing sound of the guitars and descriptive male grunts.

Finland seems to be one of the most productive countries in the doom metal scene and Shape Of Despair one of its most delightful children. Skepticism fans and funeral (and even doom/death) metal adorers should definitely check this album out!


 



Written on 21.01.2005 by "It is myself I have never met, whose face is pasted on the underside of my mind."


Comments

Comments: 10   [ 1 ignored ]   Visited by: 114 users
09.02.2008 - 02:23
heresiarch
Forever Dead
Great rewiew --- I totally agree with you
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Heaven queen , carry me away from all pain

No reason to live for
One reason to die for

... To live for my death ...
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09.02.2008 - 03:39
Bend Your Mind
I too.They're an amazing band!
It's my second favourite after "Angels of Distress."
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14.02.2009 - 21:07
AiwiAstwihad
AiryanaKhvarenah
Great album, except the lyrics maybe_in general_ but these lines rule anyway:
"Take me to another world, to another consciousness... away of this time And they do arose me... and I do watch...with broken eyes, how this weather...forever will stay...in my frozen heart... "

Make me wanna lie inside a grave or somethin....
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You who will come to the surface
From the flood that's overwhelmed us and drowned us all
Must think, when you speak of our weakness in times of darkness
That you've not had to face
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17.02.2009 - 14:42
BloodTears
ANA-thema
This album is very depressive and beautiful at the same time. It's like a funeral march really.

Shape of Despair is really an outstanding band, I like them and I don't even explore the doom metal scene that much.
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Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29

Like you could kiss my ass.
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17.02.2009 - 16:47
Marcel Hubregtse
Grumpy Old Fuck
Written by BloodTears on 17.02.2009 at 14:42

...I like them and I don't even explore the doom metal scene that much.


This is one of those doom bands that are pleasant on the ears and nto heard to get into. You don't have to be kneep deep or up to your neck into doom to be able to appreciate this.

Great album btw. IMO still their best.
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Member of the true crusade against European Flower Metal

Yesterday is dead and gone, tomorrow is out of sight
Dawn Crosby (r.i.p.)
05.04.1963 - 15.12.1996

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27.03.2009 - 03:42
tuerda
I have recently started listenning to funeral doom and everyone around seemed to point me to Shape of Despair (and specifically this album). I have now finally heard it and I am not as impressed as I thought I would be. I think the keyboards are supposed to be eerie but they are really just annoying. The female vocals used as instruments are cool, and the male singer has an appropriate deep growling voice, but the overall impression is soul crushing only in the angsty teenage sense. Emotional music is fine (I like My Dying Bride, for instance) but this sort of cheesy fake emotions don't count. This is not exactly bad (maybe 7/10)but in melodic funeral doom there are several better alternatives (esoteric,pantheist,etc.) I guess I would recommend this to funeral doom beginners who are afraid of the serious stuff.
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31.12.2009 - 23:05
Mr. Doctor
Skandino
Written by tuerda on 27.03.2009 at 03:42

but the overall impression is soul crushing only in the angsty teenage sense. Emotional music is fine (I like My Dying Bride, for instance) but this sort of cheesy fake emotions don't count.


How ironic... I think that My dying Bride is the band that actually sound depressive in the angsty teenage way.
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Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29
Like you could kiss my ass
Written by Milena on 20.06.2012 at 10:49
Rod, let me love you.
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13.03.2010 - 03:21
tuerda
Written by Mr. Doctor on 31.12.2009 at 23:05

Written by tuerda on 27.03.2009 at 03:42

but the overall impression is soul crushing only in the angsty teenage sense. Emotional music is fine (I like My Dying Bride, for instance) but this sort of cheesy fake emotions don't count.


How ironic... I think that My dying Bride is the band that actually sound depressive in the angsty teenage way.


MDB isn't soul crushing at all. It isn't funeral doom and it isn't trying to be. I agree that the music is a bit overwrought and whiny, but it produces nostalgia and melancholy, like it's supposed to. Shape of Despair is funeral doom. It should make you - well - despair. It fails spectacularly on this count.
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13.03.2010 - 03:52
Mr. Doctor
Skandino
Written by tuerda on 13.03.2010 at 03:21

MDB isn't soul crushing at all. It isn't funeral doom and it isn't trying to be. I agree that the music is a bit overwrought and whiny, but it produces nostalgia and melancholy, like it's supposed to. Shape of Despair is funeral doom. It should make you - well - despair. It fails spectacularly on this count.


And MDB fails spectacularly while trying to produce nostalgia. But tastes differ.
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Written by BloodTears on 19.08.2011 at 18:29
Like you could kiss my ass
Written by Milena on 20.06.2012 at 10:49
Rod, let me love you.
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24.03.2010 - 08:48
Builtforsin88
This band is a new metal experience, to say the least. I think ima explore the doom metal scene some more.
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