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Black Sheep - The Whales of the Grey Seas

Black Sheep
The Whales of the Grey Seas
by Johnny Jackal at 29 June 2016, 4:12 PM

At first I thought it was BLACK SHEEP, an older band in the Doom Metal genre but it’s a new band from Turku, Finland. This is their first full length album. This is probably the worst album I heard this year and the worst I had to review unfortunately. The vocals were pretty terrible and deterred from the rest. Musically it’s not bad at all but the vocals just ruin what they can do right. The first song is ‘’Tiny Pieces’’. It starts off with distorted guitars (like MESHUGGAH) then the vocals start. Well it goes downhill from there. The singer sounds right out of a Goth Metal band or a New Wave band from the 80s. It really does not fit well with the rest of the music. You also have vocals through a megaphone and it pretty much kills the rhythm of the song.

The second song is ‘’Soulcatcher’’. This reminded me a lot of LACUNA COIL. Well, without the soothing vocals of Cristina Scabbia unfortunately. There is a bunch of synthesisers on this one. You have dual vocals with the harsh vocals in the background. Those vocals are much better than the clean vocals obviously. The clean vocals still sound like a second city Goth Metal band. The third song is ‘’2013’’. It has a solid bass intro and the vocals are a bit better. It really sounded like a mix of Raine Maida (OUR LADY PEACE) and David Usher (MOIST). You also have harsh vocals on this one and a lot of piano that add some much needed depth to the song. It’s another song that sounds a lot like LACUNA COIL. The fourth song is called ‘’Choices’’. Well my choice is to stop listening to the album or tolerate it till the end! Well I listened to the album at least twice to see if my first impression was a lasting one. This song has a nice intro with the drum solo and guitar effects. The vocals seem to be way too loud for the rest of the instruments and it kind of drowns them out. The singer tries to sound like ICS Vortex of BORKNAGAR but fails miserably. The fifth song is ‘’Moonsick’’. It begins with a gloomy intro and it has some solid bass and drums work at the beginning. Unfortunately it’s a reversal of situation, now the instruments are too loud for the vocals. Ok, it’s not a bad thing when the singer isn’t the greatest but still the production is uneven throughout the album. The rest of the song sounds like some of the more commercial stuff from IN FLAMES (from their last few albums).

The last song is called ‘’Animal Puppets’’. It’s definitely their best effort. The vocals are a mix of clean and harsh vocals. Most of the time it’s harsh vocals, it’s still annoying as hell but you have some good music on this one. This reminded me a lot of TOOL, well, if TOOL had a bad singer. It’s the most technical song off the album. All bands begin somewhere and it’s a work in progress. There is some potential and you have some good musicians but the weak link is the vocalist that just doesn’t fit with the rest of the band.

Songwriting: 4
Originality: 4
Memorability: 3
Production: 6

2 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Tiny Pieces
2. Soulcatcher
3. 2013
4. Choices
5. Moonsick
6. Animal Puppets
Lineup:
Eetu Moisio - Vocals
Mika Kettunen - Drums
Kim Krappala - Bass
Joona Alamaki – Guitars
Record Label: Sliptrick Records
     


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Edited 07 December 2019
 

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