02 03 Metal Melancholy: ALBUM REVIEW: Insomnium - "Shadows Of The Dying Sun" 04 05 15 16 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 31 32 33

ALBUM REVIEW: Insomnium - "Shadows Of The Dying Sun"


Insomnium have released five amazing albums over the last decade (2002-2011), making them one of the leaders of the modern melodic death metal movement. Hence, expectations were bound to be high, when they announced their sixth album and the band did not disappoint delivering a masterpiece in “Shadows of the Dying Sun”.

Melodic death metal as a genre, has grown far more diverse from the 90’s Sweden scene where it was born, and Insomnium seem to have carved out their own space with the immense soundscape their songs generate. The real strength of the band lies in the perfect blend of melodic guitar lines with the guttural vocals they create that takes the listener on an unforgettable journey.

The moment the opening intro track “The Primeval Dark” starts, the melancholic feel of the album creeps in. A lone melodic guitar tune slowly building up, perfectly paving the path for the rest of the album. The album seamlessly shifts tempos between the heavier melodic death and atmospheric parts, complementing the excellent growls by Niilo Sevänen with the soothing clean voice of Ville Friman, and “While We Sleep” perfectly demonstrates this. The song instantly connects with the fans, before fading off with into the void.

“Revelation”, “Black Heart Rebellion” and “Collapsing Words” show the aggressive side of the band, with heavy and fast guitar riffs and crushing double bass. These tracks are closest to the traditional melodic death metal, while still maintaining their own atmospheric charm. There is no let up, as Insomnium takes one through a gloomy journey, in the magical “Lose to Night”, reminding the listeners of the golden era of Paradise Lost. The song has some powerful clean chorus, which perfectly meshes in with the growls making it one of the standout tracks on the album.

The almost 8 minute long “The River” is the longest track on the album and by far the best. The band creates a breathtaking fusion of atmospheric sounds, blast beats, guttural vocals, keyboard laden melody, epic chorus and clean vocal, resulting in a masterpiece.

“Ephemeral” starts off with an odd electronic intro, before going into a punchy chorus, reminiscent of the earlier Dark Tranquility albums. “The Promethean Song” changes gear, going into a clean chorus with a great guitar solo midway. The title track ends the album on a high, with a doom/gothic feel with passages of spoken vocals in sync with the growls.

Shadows of the Dying Sun is another quality addition to the bands catalogue. Each track having its own majestic elegance, with beautiful melodies, melancholic atmosphere and a perfect blend of growls and clean vocals. Also lyrically the album is very strong, with its inspiring and motivating lyrics. The Finns have once again stamped their leadership in the genre, which is becoming more crowded with every passing day, while at the same time expanding their own boundaries.


Reviewed By: Vidur Paliwal

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