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Review: Ephemerald - Between the Glimpses of Hope
Between the Glimpses of Hope

Label: Inverse Records
Year released: 2021
Duration: 41:08
Tracks: 9
Genre: Unclassifiable


Review online: February 5, 2021
Reviewed by: Luxi Lahtinen
Readers' Rating
How do you rate this release?

Rated 4.5/5 (90%) (6 Votes)

I recall being very impressed with the promo songs I got from this band in 2017. Both "I Bear Fire'' and "Till the Sea Swallos Us" showed a band that wasn't afraid to heavily experiment and make something completely unique, and I've predicted that they'd make something special for their debut ever since. I think I'll take up the name Nostradamus from here on out, because Between the Glimpses of Hope has arrived and proven me right.

Comparisons can be made to fellow Finnish acts Frosttide and Wintersun with some of the melodic nuances, but really, no one sounds like Ephemerald. They start with an aggressive and bombastic Black/Death base and throw in elements of Symphonic, Folk, and even some Neoclassical stylings to create an epic and often atmospheric sound that's unlike anything else. It would have been very easy for this to come out as bloated and confused, but there is real finesse to the songwriting, with all the disparate pieces feeling like they belong together without overloading the songs. From the clean folk moments on "I Bear Fire" and "Lost" to the orchestral moments scattered across the album to even a mellow ballad-esque number in "All There Is", every song feels like it has a place, every idea like it has real purpose. The vocal acrobatics of Vesa Alovaara tie it all together, as he can go from bestial harsh vocals to folksy clean singing at the drop of a hat, all of which are outstanding in their own right.

On the one hand, I'm not surprised that this ended up being as good as it is, but on the other hand, how often does a young band live up to their potential, on their debut no less? Between the Glimpses of Hope is a big album with big ideas that all work to make a distinctive and individual sound that's filled with passion and executed with erudition, and it's absolutely fantastic.

More about Ephemerald...
Interview with Ephemerald on January 13, 2018 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
Interview with guitarist Joni Snoro on August 14, 2021 (Interviewed by Luxi Lahtinen)
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