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A flawless release. - 95%

Mafioz0r, May 17th, 2008

I believe this is the demo that got Insomnium signed for good. The 19-minute-long demo contains four of the best songs from their first album, "In the Halls of the Awaiting". Personally, I think they're the best songs in Insonmium's entire discography, but then again, that's just my opinion.

The production here is as good as it gets, for a self-release. Even though the sound quality isn't as good as their first studio album, it's still better than most demos/promos out there. The biggest difference between the demo and album versions of the songs is that the production on the demo is a bit louder.

The riffs are both melodic and heavy, the vocals are death growls combined with a few whispered parts, and the drumming is quite precise. Overall, I can't find a single complaint about either one of those elements.

On to the songs. "The Ill Starred Son" is a great song with a very memorable chorus. It begins with a slow acoustic intro, and continues with a much faster pace. "Journey Unknown" contains a catchy solo/riff which appears at the beggining of the song and pops up a few more times. "Black Waters" is one of the best melodeath songs I've ever heard,. It has everything : heavy riffs, very melodic death growls and incredible drumming which includes occasional blast beats. And, finally, there's "The Bitter End", a fast paced song with a slow atmospheric intro, after which the riffs and growls kick in. This song actually sounds better here than on the first studio album.

All in all, this demo is flawless. If you're an Insomnium fan, or if you want to know how they started out, it's definitely worth checking out.