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Beautiful and mournful gothic/funeral doom - 90%

Grim_Winter, September 23rd, 2007

Autumn is upon us. Dark, lonely evenings of cold and despair and raging storms are awaiting mankind. Depressed Mode seems to me like a lake with its dark lonely waters edged by moonlight. The first September storm is keeping me inside and while listening to Depressed Mode’s debut album I realize that the music borrows the mad cadence of that storm. These beautiful and mournful compositions make harmony in my quiet soul. Ossy Salonen’s arrangements captivate me and lead me to a new dimension where I find total peace and relaxation. After 51 minutes and 15 seconds this spellbinding journey comes to an end and I find myself in a state of higher awareness.

Depressed Mode was established in 2005 as a solo project by Ossy Salonen (Vocals, synth, programming). Later on he realized that he needed guitars and assembled quickly a solid line-up, including Natalie Koskinen of Shape of Despair fame on female vocals. In autumn 2006 Firebox Records became interested in Depressed Mode and offered them a two album deal. Now, exactly one year later Depressed Mode’s debut album called Ghosts of Devotion has been unleashed upon us. Ghost of Devotion offers nine songs painted in very dark and gloomy atmospheres and heaviness in a dimmed manner. Playing style is a quite original mix of melodic funeral and gothic doom and diverse vocal styles ranging from low death metal grunts and screams to clean and chanting female vocals and choirs.

The synthesizers are mainly played in a piano-style manner and last track Cold opens with three minutes of peaceful piano and cello playing before it explodes like a tsunami into a raging fest of Burzum-like down-tempo heaviness and growls and piano continue to dominate the song more in the background so to speak. Words of Silence is the highlight of Ghosts of Devotion as it’s a perfect blend of sad atmospheres and catchiness. The choruses make you head-bang and cry simultaneously and really give me the urge to praise the talent of this exciting line-up. Natalie Koskinen’s slow and chanting vocals are best heard in Suffer in Darkness and Fallen Angel. Her contribution really gives the songs an epic feel.

Ghosts of Devotion must be experienced in its entirety to truly appreciate the melancholic themes. Lock yourself in your room, turn off the light and finally close your eyes and allowing yourself to leaving this dimension and becoming swept away by this lake of emotions and stormy waters.

Originially written by GrimWinter for http://www.northernmetal.info