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Music's not as moody as the cover art! - 47%

Lane, August 15th, 2011

"Atmospheric fields black metal", as the label Dusktone puts it. 'Mourning Wept beside Me' is this Californian act Lost Inside's fourth full-length album in two years' time. Lost Inside is basically this fellow Kold, who creates the music and performs all the instruments, except for vocals, which were this time around performed by Necromorg of Italian act Sterbenzeit.

The attached letter reads: "...The atmosphere it sets is perfect for any type of mood." Well, I certainly don't feel that this is cold, evil or barbaric, or suitable for moods like those. 'Bewildered' does not feel very bewildered at all. One melodic pattern is repeated over and over during six and a half minutes, with slight alterations here and there. The drumming is basic and the vocals are very much incoherent. There is no way understanding any of the words in this cavernous-sounding shrieking. Feeling that this song submits, every single time I hear it, is joy. I mean I don't feel joyous, but the song's vibe does. Now this is black metal?!

Fantastically named 'A Ghost among People' carries a sort of vibe and melody that reminds me of Summoning, but without any kind of austereness and majesty. The song is a tad more varying than the opener is, but the joyous (yes, again) main melody/riff is the only one sticking out in a nice way. Another finely titled song follows: 'Four Walls and a Restless Shadow'. Beginning with almost a lovely kind of melody, the song soon enters more metalic realms, but only to cause dullness. Boring riffs and unineresting performances is what the song is about. 'Like a Wilted Flower' tries to reach some kind of a comfortless state, and does not manage in that, but engulfs into blandness. The closer 'Feed on Tears' actually manages to sound sad with its old Katatonia-esque melody work and is one of those moments, that saves the album from being a big failure.

Soundwise this is very light (lower frequencies are absent), but also quite clean when considering it is black metal, or rather influenced by it. However, reverb is utilized, more or less. There are a lot of underlying nuances to be heard, so therefore I recommend this only for listening with headphones. The shrieked vocals are totally incomprehensible and additionally, bloody annoying. Gloomy cover art is beautiful and very, very moody indeed.

In all, there is not very much happening during any of the songs. Some are very repetitive, some not that much. Even though the first two songs and the closer have some interesting ideas, there are simply too many futile attempts of riff and song writing during these 42 minutes. And the album does not sound as it was an entity, but just various divergent songs put on a CD. I think I'm not on the same frequency as Kold is, but if you're looking for repeating, black metal influenced stuff, you're welcome to inspect Lost Inside.

(Originally written for Archaic Metallurgy)

Lost Inside - Mourning wept beside me - 55%

Phuling, July 26th, 2011

Ok, so Lost Inside’s released three demos, two compilations of these demos, and including Mourning wept beside me four albums. That doesn’t sound strange, but given the fact that it’s all been done since 2009 it feels highly unlikely it’ll be very good. At least that’s my first thought, and too over-productive bands usually have a problem with too similar and bland material. Now, this is a one-man band with the exception of a little help with the vocals, and one guy writing copious amounts of class A material in such a short time feels more than highly unlikely; it feels damn near impossible.

Well, unfortunately this is just depressive black metal, nothing more. You’ve heard it hundreds of times before, you’ve heard it done way better, but you’ve most certainly also heard it done much, much worse. Lost Inside falls somewhere in the middle of the pile, I’d say. The production is very fitting for the style with a rather harsh and cold, yet vivid, sound that lets all instruments be heard instead of muffling it all in a distorted and noisy mess. The riffing is something fairly unusual, though, while not being just a series (often countable on one hand) of repeated riffs, but rather a drawn-out melody that stretches through an entire song. And where you can actually sense the saddened atmosphere and moody touch to the riffing, the vocals lack any and all sincerity. The screaming is varied and standard, but I don’t feel it, I don’t feel any emotions coming through, and that is a humongous part of what makes this type of black metal work; you gotta feel the sincere angst. This has none.

The drumming’s pretty damn standard with its slow tempo and repetitive beats, so there’s really nothing to comment on there. Sure, the tempo does pick up on occasion, but doesn’t help to relieve the tediousness of the otherwise just standard repetition. The atmosphere is bleak and the production complements and greatly enhances it, just as the melodic touch sometimes perfects it with a finishing touch of sorrow. Mourning wept beside me has both pros and cons, but the cons are difficult to ignore. Such a prominent and important part of making an impact on the listener, creating a true sense of honesty, is the vocal effort, and it just isn’t happening. The guitar lead in Feed on tears is a nice touch to spice things up, but it doesn’t change the fact that in the end the album is too repetitive and the songs lack identity. But I’m most certainly not a fan of the style in general, so maybe someone completely sold on it will get a kick out of Lost Inside. I, on the other hand, would rather put on something else.

Originally written for My Last Chapter