|Review: Last Souls - Inner Voices|
Year released: 2004
Review online: April 22, 2005
Reviewed by: Chaossphere
Chalk up another pleasant surprise from the "Random Promo's From the Mailbox" pile. This trio of young Italians have conjured up a rather ear-catching demo of epic metallic madness. Despite the somewhat rigid drum machine, the songwriting here is a rock-solid construction of sharp, crunchy melodic riffs, harsh vocal exhortations and wicked lead work – the solo's here are definitely what separates Last Souls from the horde of bands plying this particular style. Despite their self-description of "Progressive Extreme Metal", there's really nothing here which hasn't been done before, but it's certainly done well enough to excuse them on that issue.
The standout track here is undoubtedly the opening one "The Martyr", although all three of these seven-plus minutes tracks pack in plenty of metallic goodness. They throw in a few clean vocals of the usual "dark gothic moaning" variety, but it's mostly a harsh blackened scream, mostly avoiding the lower ranges. Comparisons could be made to Vintersorg, newer Enslaved and even fellow Italians Mortuary Drape – somewhat adventurous but always sticking to a well-grounded foundation in the familiar. The lyrics are a mite dodgy, seemingly of a "spiritual" nature – mostly ranting about the excesses of humanity, but never remotely preachy, so I'll let them off on that account too. Overall this demo is a powerful, intense experience, the only complaint being that it's too damn short at a mere 22 minutes. Give me twice that and I'll be quite happy, thank you very much.
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