|Review: Immortalis Machina - Cold Forever|
Year released: 2004
Genre: Gothic Doom Metal
Review online: October 13, 2004
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
Rated 3/5 (60%) (4 Votes)
When I read that this band "combines Goth Metal and Doom, with a touch of Torch" I was afraid, very afraid. But actually this band has some good ideas and an original approach, they just don't always carry it off that well.
The first cut will surprise you, with chunky, uptempo riffing that reminded me of old Metallica a little. This is actually the best song on the CD, with some good heavy riffs and crooning, yet catchy vocals. Overall the singing is where the Torch comparison comes in, as vocalist "E" has a throaty, lounge-singer voice a bit reminiscent of ex-Flowing Tears chanteuse Stephanie Duchenne. She's a bit understated, and she has a tendency to follow the guitar riffs a bit too closely with her vocal lines, so frequently the singing simply follows the song and does nothing to add to it. But a lot of her melodies are catchy nonetheless, and I caught myself humming some of them afterwards. The guitarwork is really pretty damned good, but mixed a bit flat, so you really have to pay attention to appreciate it.
The flaws with this are the ones you would expect with a band of this type – too many of the songs sound alike, and tend (especially on the latter half of the CD) to blend together and just sort of drone on with no real hooks to speak of. I really like the lyrical approach of this album, with dark fantastic themes as on the creepy "Shaking Chill" and the Tanith Lee-esque "Lycanthropy And Desire". The booklet is very pro, with a cool logo and well-photoshopped cover art. I love when bands use snake imagery, being the snake guy I am, but I wish they'd do some research beforehand. The snake on their cover is a very cute infant elaphe, or rat snake, but the only way it could hurt you is if you choked on it, and it's probably too small to do even that easily. Sigh.
So this is a good effort, and I encourage Immortalis Machina to keep on in this direction. They have the right idea, and with some work, could become a highly cool and unique band. If you are into dark, gothic metal with very cool lyrics, then this is a band to check out.
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