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Could have been so much better - 71%

differer, June 9th, 2010

Before Sightless got signed, they were easily among the most interesting and promising demo bands in Finland. After hearing this, their debut full-length, it has to be said that not all expectations were met. They are still interesting and promising, but at this point that's not quite enough anymore. Almost nothing has changed since their demo days.

The name of the game is fast, half-technical death/thrash. The musicianship is excellent, in particular the drummer is an expert in his field. There are a lot of good ideas in the riffs, which could often be described as melodic in the way technical death like Psycroptic or Gorod is at times melodic. Some tasteful guitar solos here and there also have a good sense of melody to them, which is a bit unusual for the style but always a plus. The band has progressed somewhat in terms of songwriting: it's more “musical” than before, and one can even notice a few real chord progressions underneath the guitarists' flying fingers. The songs move from one part to the next seamlessly, are logical and easy to follow. One thing Sightless has also learned is to use slower, heavier parts instead of going at full speed all the time.

However, there are things they haven't learned, most notably that the songs are still far too similar to each other. Excluding the intro, there are ten tracks here and most of them sound just about exactly alike. None of them are particularly long either, and simply don't have the time to build any identity. None of them are bad on their own, but can't really be distinguished from one another. The few songs that do stick out do it in a largely negative way: 'Path of the Unmaker' has a ridiculously simple but not at all catchy chorus, while 'Beauty Lies in Blasphemy' features some very annoying and out of place electronic breaks. Towards the end of the album it starts to feel like the band is running out of ideas – the riffs become simpler and the songs turn predictable. Also, even though an occasional chance of pace is a good thing in itself, the breakdown riffs are not very good at all, just average chugging.

If I remember correctly, the band was in quite a hurry to get this album out after getting signed. Whatever the reason for this, I feel it has to account for at least some of the music's negative sides; it often seems to have been written hastily, accepting any ideas that came to mind. It should say something that 'Unleashed', the only old demo song included, is in my opinion the best track here. Hurry or not, there's not nearly enough quality material for a full-length, and the band would have been better off putting out an EP instead of this.

Still, if you don't mind hearing the same song a couple of times on an album, there's not much reason to complain. The music is mostly enjoyable, regardless, and there is definitely a lot to listen to (not counting most of the awfully chuggy parts). At it's best, this is actually very impressive. The production is quite good too, and unlike on their demos, the guitars are now high enough the mix. In other words, 'Larvae of Trinity' is perfectly acceptable – it's just that I expected more than that.