|Review: Mortemia - Misere Mortem|
Label: Napalm Records
Year released: 2010
Genre: Gothic Metal
Review online: June 18, 2010
Reviewed by: Lior "Steinmetal" Stein
Rated 2.88/5 (57.5%) (8 Votes)
Morten Veland, founder of Norway's Sirenia wanted to express himself apart from his main band so he formed his own Symphonic Gothic project, Mortemia. Handling all the instruments and vocals as well as writing all the songs, Veland has created a sound similar to his past efforts with Sirenia and Tristania, but with some noticeable differences from those bands.
Mortemia's debut, Misere Mortem, features nine tracks that, in addition to his creative duties, were produced by Veland. He has created a pitch-black dramatic feel to the album. Mika Jusslia handled the mixing of Misere Mortem.
Misere Mortem has lots of potential as a melancholic metal album. It isn't just about doom-like depression. The album is like a symphonic version of both Tristania and Sirenia. The use of operatic effects like choirs and female vocals, in addition to Veland's own masterful growls, is compelling. The music is interesting as well, ranging from Gothic to Death Metal riffs and charming lead guitar work.
On the whole, Misere Mortem is a good album and the songs present a wide range of dramatics. There is a problem in that there are many repetitive patterns and even guitar leads that sound the same from song to song. It may be that the album is a concept piece, so it is conceivable that some of the musical themes are being repeated on purpose. Regardless of their originality, the guitar leads express great emotion. And anyone who liked a particular lead the first time around will be pleased to hear it again later on the album.
Misere Mortem holds aggression, tragedy and soft atmosphere in its Gothic grip. The first single, "The One I Once Was," which is also the first video, is a great European Metal song. Veland's past experiences with his other bands have exposed him to other elements and helped him with his own take on extreme Gothic Metal. While not every track on Misere Mortem is an impressive listener, the album is a clear demonstration of Veland's talent.
This is strong and harsh Metal, yet still delivers the true essence of Gothic music. Highlights: "The One I Once Was," "The Pain Infernal and the Fall Eternal," "The Vile Bringer of Self-destructive Thoughts," "The Chains that Wield My Mind" and "The Wheel of Fire."
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