|Review: Cryonic Temple - Immortal|
Label: Metal Heaven
Year released: 2008
Genre: Heavy/Power Metal
Review online: December 21, 2008
Reviewed by: Larry Griffin
Rated 1.86/5 (37.14%) (7 Votes)
Man, I used to love this fucking band. They were generic, they were cheesy as Hell and they played with a lot of pride and youthful vigor. They were your typical "swords and sorcery warrior Metal band," and they were damn good at it. The songwriting was always sort of Maidenish and derivative, and they were never the most dynamic band ever, but who cares about that? Well, apparently the other members of Cryonic Temple sure did after their vocalist departed from the band, because this is not exactly up the same tree as the excellent Blood, Guts and Glory back in 2003.
Immortal is a heinously boring and dull album full of "more mature" and "darker" songwriting, that just seems to scream "we're too grown up to play fun music anymore, so here's an overly polished, sterile turd with attempts at being deep and insightful." There are almost no hooks here at all, and the band just doesn't seem to have any chemistry together - all of these songs feel forced and disjointed, although they try to cover that up by playing heavier and louder than ever. Magnus Thorin is a decent vocalist, perhaps more competent technically than good ole Glen Metal was, but I don't like him as well; his voice just doesn't really stand out all that much, being pretty much a second rate Ronny Hemlin or Rob Rock, and the stuff he's singing is usually pretty tepid and bland itself, anyway.
The production may be heavier and clearer than ever, but the songwriting is just stale. There are a lot of embellishments here, with slightly more complex song structures and some darker over-tones that just baffle me, as the band was never known for that sort of thing. Cryonic Temple have completely lost the sloppy, cheery, hooky "Metal forever!"-esque cheesiness that made their earlier albums so appealing in that juvenile, silly way. They were never a serious band, and so this new, more serious direction is going to have to be elaborated upon a lot further before I or any of their other fans buy it. Even though songs like the title track and the mammoth "Where Sadness Never Rests" are technically sound, all they really evoke from me is a yawn. "Standing Tall" is about the only good song on here, but its big, catchy chorus and speedy tempo will fool you into thinking the rest of the album is worth anything at all - it is not. Everything else is pretty much dung, climaxing with the atrocious closing tracks "As I Sleep" and "Departure." Disgusting.
A disappointing and lame album from a tired band. I know this might not sound bad to people who have never heard the band, and others will simply delude themselves as I did at first into thinking that this is any good, but it's not. It sucks. I'm not going to count Cryonic Temple out yet, as they may come back strong in a few years with a real killer of an album, but unless you like crusty, soggy, third-rate Power Metal, you can avoid this one this holiday season, as it is mostly equal to a big ole lump of coal in your stocking.
P.S. Why do so many bands name their albums Immortal? Baffling.
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