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frustrating... - 68%

cweed, May 4th, 2006

Personally, I believe this album could have been much better than it was. For one, it had all the right ingredients for a good melodic black metal album- acoustic passages, icy atmospheric keyboards, memorable melodies, even the production quality is pretty decent. However, after the first track (which is by far the best song on the album), the album becomes way too repititious and long (the actual length of the CD is fine, but 14 tracks is a bit much, and because some songs arent as good as others, it waters down the album). The other major problem that I have with this album is the drumming by Toni Tervo. It's OK if a black metal drummer isn't blasting the whole time (especially in melodic black metal), but there are many parts on the album that could use a good blast beat to ratchet up the instensity, and Tervo simply does not take it to the next level when needed. On top of that, the only instrument i was satisfied with on this album was the keyboards, as it seems that they probably wrote most of the melodies for the songs on a keyboard first. I suppose the last minor complaint I have is that there are no fast or slow songs, every song is pretty mid-tempo, which gets kind of old, and some of the riffs on many of the songs can come off as pretty bland or just plain boring..
Thus far, it seems like I hate this album. I don't, as it does have some good aspects to it- as far as atmospherics go, Catamenia are fairly good at capturing the mood they're trying to convey in their music, and from time to time they do mix it up with slightly different vocal approaches, acoustic guitars, etc.
This album was frustrating because it had potential, but ultimately I felt that the band could have done better. This is the only Catamenia album I've heard, and because it's their first release, I can hope for improvement when I listen their to their later work.