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This is what most people would say about this CD, especially after listening to At Sixes and Sevens. That is, however, a most untruthful affirmation. An Elixir for Existance is a wonderful album in its own, albeit not as immediately pleasant to the ears the previous one. Thist only means that it requires a few more listenings before you can really say anything about it.
Generalizing a bit, this album features some heavier riffing, and the drums are a bit heavier too. We get more harsh vocals on this one, and less clean male ones, and sometimes even less female vocals in a few songs. But the beauty is still there.
Here's a few words on each of this album's songs:
Lithium and a Lover: Not a song I'd use to open an album, but then again I'm not Morten Veland to decide what's going in the album and where. A good song nevertheless. 8/10
Voices Within: Well... I've always loved the guitar+violin combination, and that's how this song begins. I know that this is Veland's style for some songs, but I kind of dislike the way this song slows down in the middle. 7/10
A Mental Symphony: Has some of the catchiest lyrics I've seen in a Gothic Metal song. "A dance with the devil and a flirt with the dead". Apart from that, wonderful song. Masterfully well-placed instruments give this song a very nice atmosphere 10/10
Euphoria: A heavier and darker song, despite its love-oriented lyrics, featuring what I somewhat consider "beauty and the beast" vocals at its finest, as in Morten's growls and Henriette's singing contrast in a way that makes them sound special. 10/10
In My Darkest Hours: There's something with this song that bothers me in a sense. After hearing it countless times I still can't identify what it is, but there's something wrong with it's atmosphere. Or maybe I just didn't like it. 6/10
Save Me From Myself: Erm... what can I say? Slow, no guitars, only Henriette's voice backed by violins, drums and keys. Trash? Most definetely not! This little beauty can easily lead a more sensitive person to tears. Wonderful lyrics. 9/10
The Fall Within: When you start listening to this song you could say it's not really impressive. Really, this song's beginning is not really what I like about it. A few seconds later it picks up and the song becomes a masterpiece. 9/10
Star-Crossed: Well, well, well... what do we have here? This song has all it takes to become Sirenia's official anthem. Maybe not anymore now that Sirenian Shores is out, but then again, Sirenian shores uses the same basic melody as Star-Crossed. This beauty has it all: Excellent instruments, great lyrics... even the choirs sound great in this one. Definetely one of Morten's finest works so far. 10/10
Seven Sirens and a Silver Tear: Not much to say about this one, since it's basically a keyboard/piano solo song, with no singing whatsoever. It is, however, a very pleasant way to end this album. Definetely makes up for its rather odd opening. 9/10
Overall, an excellent album, unworthy of the depreciative criticism it receives all over by people who compare it to At Sixes and Sevens without a proper basis. 9/10