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Now, I am not really into the whole gothic metal thing, seeing as how I am not a Goth, but I really like Tristania's music. A while ago I got a hold of some of their albums, which I reviewed, but I actually had the pleasure of buying this album in the stores. When I looked on the Metal- Archives to see which album it was, it was put under Best of/ Compilation. But it is not a best of album. It is just Tristania's two EP's (Midwintertears and Angina) put on one cd. So I will take time to review each EP again, because it is a little better than the original EP's.
Midwintertears features three songs on the EP. Sirene is just an intro song that builds up to Midwintertears, and build up it does. One of the reasons why I like Tristania is because of their atmospheric music, which is also very dark and heavy. Midwintertears is more of a ballad, ending up at eight minutes. It features a very interesting keyboard section and of course the cool distortion that Tristania uses on guitars. The vocals also shine on this song, showing two kinds of growled death metal vocals and a very clean beautiful voice (at 4:20).
The next song is Pale Enchantress which is another long song ending up at six minutes. Once again keyboards, and actually piano, make this song what it is. The well done vocals and guitar riffs add on to make a very dark song. Cease to Exist is a bonus, seeing as how the first three songs end up on the album Widow's Weed. Cease to Exist adds onto this dark ambient feeling. This song brings a better vocal performance and is worth listening to despite it lasts a little over nine minutes long.
All the songs on the Angina EP make it on the album Beyond the Veil except for Saturnine. The first song is Angina, and you can tell there is a distortion change. It sounds louder and is a lot heavier. There is also a lot more emphasis on the vocals. The two pairs of growled vocals go at it and sing together, while the female vocal shows off her amazing talent. They even do some choir like vocals, which definitely add to the music. It also seems that there are some kind of violins, maybe that are distorted, could be my imagination though. At least these songs aren't as long as the Midwintertears EP songs.
The second song is Opus Relinque, the Radio Edit, whatever the hell that means. I doubt any radio station would play this, unless it was really underground. The piano plays a more important role on this song, as do the keyboards. This song is unique, and sounds like a mix between the Mortal Kombat theme and something from one of the Castlevania video games. The last song on this album is Saturnine, which again is a bit of a bonus. It is just a two minute instrumental, which adds very weird keyboards and snyth sounds. Its hard to describe this song, it is very different that is for sure.
So over all we have two good EP's slapped on one album. Nice to do when you can't find the original EP's on cd. Plus the production is better on here than on the original copy.