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Senmuth - KaaraNa - 60%

ConorFynes, January 7th, 2011

Seldom a man to drastically change his style, 'KaaraNa' is another one of Senmuth's albums that falls firmly within the region of his ethnic melange of sounds that's now fair to call his staple style. Collaborating once again with his longtime friend listed as Eresh, Senmuth mastermind Valery Av sits down to craft yet another ethnic voyage with this 'KaaraNa'. Although no far cry from what's been done in the past by Senmuth, this album is certainly quite a bit more enjoyable than the typical album Senmuth has done in this increasingly tired style, and through some more convention composition and thoughtful arrangement, Senmuth manages to create an album, of which it's positive traits outweigh the negatives.

Possibly the most pertinent thing about 'KaaraNa' that distinguishes it from the dozens of other albums Senmuth has written within a year of this one is the fact that it shows the man behind this music finally returning back to doing collaborations with some of his fellow musicians. While Senmuth is generally a project orchestrated by one man alone, his music always seemed to benefit from a little outside help. Here, Senmuth's friend only appears on two tracks; one as a drummer and the second reprising his regular role as a singer. Unfortunately, while Eresh is a very good singer and obviously a talented artist, his contribution is very minor, only adding some ambient vocalizations that wash into the mix, and some drumming that one could not tell was anything other than status quo, without the help of the credits.

In terms of the music itself, there's very little that I found very surprising here after having listened to many albums that sound very similar to this by the same artist. However, keeping that in mind, this one does pass off as a better release than many of the similar ethnic meanders, for the fact that the music feels as if it was actually composed, rather than just jammed out at a random pace. That being said, there is still not enough of a development in the somewhat unremarkable compositions to call it an excellent album.