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These days I am very cautious when it comes to melodic death metal. I love death metal bands like Deicide and Cannibal Corpse, but the melodic stuff is problematic. The only melodic death metal band I can listen to is At the Gates. Unfortunately, bands like In Flames have ruined the genre with their popular kind of influence that they implement – just listen to “Soundtrack to your escape” and you will see what I mean. These days almost every melodic death metal band wants to sound like At the Gates and In Flames and many of them fail in their attempt, since In Flames themselves have become a weak band. Overall, melodic death metal has become quite stagnant.
I decided to try Mors Principium Est and I was very sceptic. In general, this album has quite a few bright moments, but I would not call it unique. Tracks like “Another Creation”, “Inhumanity”, “D.I.B.” and a few others sound almost the same. On tracks like these, I hear a kind of sound that every other melodic death metal band plays – fast rhythmic guitars mixed with fast paced drumming. The style of the guitars is something that every other band in this genre uses. What rescues Mors Principium Est, is the fact that they implement a technical death metal style with their guitar solos and at least this brings something unique to the table. In most of the tracks, the background is full with keyboards and synthetic melodies that do not really do anything for me. However, some tracks sound unique – “The Lust called Knowledge” and “Life in Black” contains some very bright moments. I especially enjoyed the complex solos on “Life in Black”, but if only the whole album could be this unique.
The technical death metal kind of solos that the band uses, are constantly interrupted by melodic high-pitched solos that typically sound like In Flames. The cherry on the stale cake is certainly the clean vocals that comes later on in the album – I found myself asking “Am I listening to that pathetic Nickelback?!”. The album ends with a track that (again!) sounds like “Another Creation” and some of the others. In general there are a few moments on this album that are exciting, but I think that bands in the melodic death metal genre should stop trying to be like At the Gates and especially In Flames. I think that every band, regardless of their genre, should try their best to implement their own unique sound and just be themselves. To me, “Inhumanity” is a typical example of an album that would suit the fans of this specific genre, but to me this is just another stagnant and stale conformity that does not really belong in the greater metal perspective.
For a debut album, this is just amazing. Some have compared it to Insomnium, Children Of Bodom, Kalmah, and In Flames (personally, I see no corelation between these bands, but hey, people say things at times). This album is full of atmosphere, lyrical depth, and guitar shred (a trait that this band is just thriving with, thanks in part due to guitarist Jarkko Kokko).
The opening track, "Another Creation", is probably my favorite song of all time. It tells you what to expect from this album. The lyrics are very deep on this song, and the riffs cooperate quite well with the drums and vocals to create a very epic feel to the song. This song is full of life and, like almost every song this band have ever made, shred guitar. Strangely enough, despite the incredible speed of the solos, they fit with the song quite well to enforce the atmosphere of the what's going on.
This album has sort of a progressive-metal touch to it, compared to this band's later albums, so don't expect head banging madness (but feel free to do so when appopriate). All of the lyrics are very deep in meaning, and the guitar riffs lock quite well in the drums to boost feeling. Notably, the songs "Inhumanity" really reminds of that feeling you get right before you answer the last question of the last test you'll ever take in school. This song is also remembered amongst fans for it's inhumanly fast guitar solo (hence both the album title and the song title), in one section going as fast as 32 notes per second (if my calculations are correct). The song "D.I.B." ("Death Is the Beginning", the band's name when translated from latin to english) is the band's "self-titled" song and really is epic in feeling. The solo also has sone of the fastest sweep picking I've ever heard from any guitarist, and like every solo from this band, fits the song's feeling extremely well. It sort of gives you that "martyr" feeling to it, like you're about to die, but you'll be in heaven. Other excellent examples of feeling in this album include "Last Apprentice", the acoustic instrumental "Oblivion" and the closing track "Into Illusion".
If you like progressive metal and/or melodic death metal, this is a necessity for your CD collection. You might as well not call yourself a metal fan if you don't own a copy of this CD.
Yes, yes it's all here. The technical guitar parts, the galloping rhythms and the Iron Maiden like guitar solos, making, I guess, a very solid Melodic Death (Gothenburg) album. I don't actually own this album. I'd like to point out I simply have an mp3 copy a friend made for me insisting I must hear them on the grounds that they where intresting new group. However upon listening I found nothing but another bland In Flames/At The Gates/Dark Tranquility inspired young band who seeming have be swept up in popularity of the Nuclear Blast and Century Media driven "Euro Metal" phenonmon, that has occurred in Europe in the last few years. The inclusion of keyboards on this album has lead many to proclaim this band as the new Children Of Bodom. However anyone expecting the interesting and highly skilled use of keyboards as found in such albums as Hatebreeder and Follow The Reaper will find themselves highly disappointed. Instead the keyboard drone away in background attempting to heighten the atmosphere at key parts in the song, sounding more akin to early Satyricon or Rotting Christ than the flash soloing of Janne Warman.
The album starts off with the typical quick paced thrasher "Another Creation" which is quite enjoyable, and then quickly moves into Eternity's Child which posseses a very catchy guitar harmony and a quite nice atmospheric part. This is really the only song on the album that manages to put the keyboards to good use and IMO is the srongest track on the album. However Mors Principium Est make the mistake of opening their album with their best matterial, and the album soon takes a turn for the worst and disolves into a sludge of forgettable Gothenburg style riffs which to my ears are comparable, to modern day Arch Enemy. The only other song that really stands out to me on the album is "The Lust For Knowledge".
While Mors Principium Est clearly have delivered a competant Gothenburg style album here, it really is just another case of "Nice try, come back when when you've thought of something origonal". Mabey the 15 and 16 year old Nuclear Blasters may find something exciting about, but for the seasoned metal fan it will sadly hold nothing new.
With the recent trend of many influential bands switching sounds (i.e In Flames, Soilwork, etc.), many bands began to trade in talent for profit. What other band would take the torch left behind and continue along the path? This is where Mors Principium Est comes in. With "Inhumanity", Much of the album reminds me of old In Flames very much. From the Opening of "Another Creation" to the somber end of "Into Illusion", the band seems have this genre down already. Not many can say to have done this, let alone with a debut album. And what a stellar debut it is.
The opening track, "Another Creation", is fantastic, with a great solo and keyboards that don't hinder the other instruments, yet can stand out through the crowd.
I first heard "Eternity's Child" on a music sampler awhile back. This is the track that definately got my attention to this band. a decent track that continues the flow of the album.
"In My Words" begins to show the heavier side of the band with a bit of thrash thrown in. One of the best solo's on the album belongs to this track.
"Inhumanity" continues the the heavier flow with nice guitar work thrown in between chorus. Great harmonies on this track.
"D.I.B" opens fast with a nice melodic keyboard sound to continue through the song. Nice guitar harmonies come in around 2:10 and continue until a good solo begins around 3:15. Definitely one of the stand out tracks of the album.
"The Lust Called Knowledge" opens with a nice keyboard melody before the guitars come in. Around 2:57, the guitars begin to kick some ass. Twin guitar melodies come in till around 3:55. Another Stand Out Track.
"Oblivion" is a nice intrumental with a ,somewhat, beautiful close. I'll go as far to say that this track is up there with the fine intrumentals In Flames has done on previous albums. This track seems to give a good introduction to the next track.
"Life In Black" is where the flow seems to regress, but not to a snails pace. A some what dark track with dark lyrics, the song really picks up around 1:46. Another great solo from Jori & Jarkko. These guys are indeed talented, not that i didn't notice before.
"Last Apprentice" brings the flow back up with faster tone than the others. Keyboards seem to have more of a presence, but are nice blended with the guitars. Great stuff here.
"Into Illusion" opens somber with a nice drum beat, then a great guitar and keyboard harmony comes in. With this track, we hear the first clean vocals of Ville. Unlike Anders, this guy's clean vocals aren't whiny, but rather nicely fit with the somber moments of the song. The harsh vocals are also present, but aren't interfering with anything. Ville keeps both through out the song, keeping a nice, steady flow.
I HIGHLY recommend this to any Melodic Death fans. Especially fans of Old In Flames. While many reading this will feel i have a vendetta against In Flames. Truth is i do, but so do its legion of followers from the beginning. Thanks to this band continuing where In Flames left off, all i can hope for is more from them in the future.
This band got some quite skilled musicians. The solos are stunning. This should make this album a masterpiece, but believe me. It isn't.
I think this a release that is a quite good one, but it has one HUGE flaw. It turns boring after just a few listenings. The music has nothing to say. I think I saw somewhere that this band first thougth about being a power metal band but later decided to join the melodic death scence. The difference must be they changed the vocal style and maybe sligthly heavier guitarr playing. This is power metal with harsh vocals like most of the melodic death metal. If you can imagine Children of Bodom, add a heavier sound and less keyboards and you got this.
The keyboards on this release are very rarely the main instrument. Most of the time they are in the background. They are trying to create atmosphere but are not that sucessful. It's a lot better than the keyboards used by a specific faggoth band from Norway though. The drums are not that excellent. There is nothing spectacular about them.
The vocals are your traditional melodic death style. They throw in some quite annoying "distorted clean vocals" though that could have been done better.
A few things about the songs, couldn't write more about them since there isn't much that differs between them.
1. Another Creation: The best solos by far. Maybe the best song of the album.
2. Eternity's Child. A LOT of keyboards in this one.
5. OK not as stunning solos compared to some of the other songs but.. I seem to like this one the best.
7. Oblivion: A 2 minute acoustic song. Quite decent really.
9. Last Apprentice has some extremely gay things around 1:25 that spoils a rather nice song. Why!
10. Into Illusion: Slow and some occasional clean vocals. That chorus WILL become boring.
No matter what you say, this album is nothing spectacular. It's well played but it's not that long lived and it brings nothing new to the genre. It's more of a mix of the existing things within the genre. If you are a fan of this kind of music. Buy this one. If you just enjoy a couple of the releases from the genre stay away and don't waste your money. There are gems in every genre that possibly the most fanatical hater of the genre migth atleast accept but this is a stereotype of the different clones.
One sentence review: Entertainment that can waste a couple of hours for you.
These finnish guys are truly influenced by Children of Bodom. In fact, if I did not know that this was Mors Principium Est, I would have guessed it to be CoB. Listen to the song "Eternity's Child" and you will know what I mean.
Their music is somewhat heavier, their vocals a bit more aggressive, and the tempo is a bit higher if you compare with Children of Bodom. The Guitars is up front, while the voclas are to the back. The vocals are harsh throughout the whole cd, except from some parts on the last track "Into Illusion", and in my opinion those soft vocals should not have been there. (that's my only complaint)
The music will bash your head out for 38 minutes! Mors Principium Est rocks! And I must say that you very seldom gets this much out of a debut-album. If you're in to melodic death and/or CoB, check this out!
I'm already waiting with great anticipation for their next album!