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Octavia Sperati is a mostly all girl band from Norway. They play gothic metal with doom influences. The doom influences are all musical, preferring distorted guitars with slightly slower tempos and heavier riffs. No death growls on the album (might be that the only guy in the band is on drums) which if you are not fan (of death growls), is a positive. Personally I think maybe a couple songs with few lines that are growled would better influence the atmosphere of the album but that is me.
Overall the instrumentation is well done. They create a dark atmosphere of the winters in Norway (which was supposedly and influence on their song writing). They use keyboards and violins sparingly not allowing them to take the place of the guitars. One thing I enjoy best about the album is the heavy use of the guitars. Too often the guitars lose the melodies to symphonies or keyboards. Octavia Sperati does not allow that in there music. In fact it’s almost impossible to tell that there are keyboards (but they are there). As per the gothic metal genre there are almost no guitar solos but both guitarists demonstrate an ability to craft riffs and blend their guitars together really well. One production problem is the drums get dropped out a bit. It’s a bit hard to hear them over the guitars in some places. The bass work is solid and on par with the guitars in the band helping achieve the doomy sound on the album. The vocals are well done. Silje Wergeland has a darker voice but still does an excellent job in adding to the overall feel of the album.
The album opens a little weak with Guilty Am I. The guitars are heavily distorted but the main riff has more of a hard rock feel than a metal feel. Other note worthy songs includes the single released from the album (…And Then the World Froze) and the song that has a music video (Moonlight). These are two extremely well done songs. …And Then the World Froze utilizes an orchestra to create an atmosphere well the riffs carry the song forward. Moonlight is catchy and would probably be a much more solid opener for the album. Other high spots on the album include “Don’t Believe a Word”, a piano ballad with excellent vocals and “Dead End Poem”, also a ballad. The closing song is also rather pointless, with a short two minute symphony outro.
Octavia Sperati demonstrates excellent musical ability with the ability to craft heavy, dark songs but lighter piano ballads as well. Outside of the opening and closing tracks this album is solid. This is recommended to anyone that claims gothic metal as their favorite genre because no collection would be complete with out this album. Octavia Sperati are creative and innovative preferring to create their own sound with out jumping on board with the rest of female fronted goth metal bands.