Register Forgot login?

© 2002-2019
Encyclopaedia Metallum

Best viewed
without Internet Explorer,
in 1280 x 960 resolution
or higher.

Privacy Policy

Dreamscapes - 91%

mercyfulfate666, August 1st, 2008

For those not familiar with Tearstained, upon listening you will be greeted with a stylistic union of old Bathory and Mercyful Fate. That being said, Mikael adds variation to keep things interesting ranging from aggressive thrash-like passages to the use of keyboards in certain places. Nightmare Visions according to the liner notes is a collection of dreams and visions that Mikael experienced and recorded. This concept is relevant throughout the entire album.

The album begins with the Old House On the Mountainside and right off the bat, the most notable thing is a stylistic change in the delivery of the vocals from previous albums. The only way I can describe them is being in sort of a “story telling mode” and less harsh than the vocals found on the previous three albums. I think the way that the Mikael uses the vocals are effective for this album because it gives it a much more personal feel. He is telling his tale and you are subject to the transgression of his mind through the various dream-worlds.

The album progresses, each song unfolding like a story in a very King Diamond like fashion. Lyrically, all of the songs deal with individual dreams offering quite the interesting look into the mind of Mikael. The structures of the tracks remain consistent with a lot of thrash-like passages like in “The Plague Dream” or “Mesta Mansion.” There are some tracks with keyboards, which is somewhat different for Tearstained in the previous two tracks as well. Musically for Tearstained, the album emits a convergence of the Homicidal Tendencies and Final Thoughts sounds but in a limited fashion. I think that Mikael could have developed some parts of this album a little more but none the less, this is a solid album all around and definitely a creative one.

Overall this album I feel limits what Tearstained is. It does not offer the full spectrum that can be found on Final Thoughts or Monumental In Its Sorrow. I wouldn’t start here if your new to the band but fans wont be disappointed.

Side note: I was surprised to hear a Slayer cover (Necrophiliac). I just didn’t expect it.

Stand-out tracks: The Old House On the Mountainside, The Coffin, Not Quite Awake.