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Senmuth - YanTra Light - 50%

ConorFynes, January 5th, 2011

A significantly more guitar-based venture that what a listener might normally be used to from this particular period of Senmuth's career, 'YanTra Light' could sound like a bout from this eclectic Russian project's early existence. Of course, the ethnic and electronic influences are here in full force as they usually are, but the heavy presence of riffs and guitar distortion makes this album stand out from it's contemporary Senmuth releases in terms of it's direction. Sadly however, the final product is scarcely more enjoyable than what one might expect of a typical Senmuth album.

As has been said, the highlight and distinct feature of 'YanTra Light' is the large presence of riff- oriented guitar work, something that hasn't been in Senmuth very much since the man behind the music decided to stray away from the crazy industrial metal of yesteryear. While a fair amount of the guitar work here is still based in heavy, downtuned power chords and sonic sludge, there are sure signs here that Valery Av can use his guitar skills for more than simple pseudo-melodic leads, and doomy sustains. Even while most of the more interesting riffs here are very simple in nature, they are a refreshing change from the generally unfulfilled guitar writing Senmuth usually does on the electric guitar. Also here are some strong acoustic guitar melodies, which are generally more memorable than the electric guitar work.

As always,m the problem with 'YanTra Light' seems to lie in the fact that it's very loosely composed, and most tracks seem to drone on with a listless backing track, letting different instruments (all played by Valery Av) play around overtop. While this could work very well, things have a bad way of falling into the background far too easily, although the evidence of a few strong metal riffs here and there help maintain at least some level of interest throughout the course of the album.

A decent album from Valery Av and his Senmuth project, albeit a pretty forgettable one, save for the aforementioned guitar riffs.