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Forgetting The Memories – Vemod Award winner

Forgetting The Memories
Vemod
by Mark Machlay at 22 December 2021, 6:28 AM

 Swedish metalcore five-piece FORGETTING THE MEMORIES released their third studio album “Vemod” at the end of last September via Long Branch Records. The band formed way back in 2010, based in Stockholm, Sweden and began cutting their teeth on the local scene before going into the studio in December 2011 at Reflection Music and emerging with their first 5-song EP “Moments” later that month. They would spend a bit more time writing, pre-production and demoing new material, finally releasing their second 5-song EP “Separate by Time” in January 2015. They would lose their first drummer due to school and welcome Jacob Hammerstarn before releasing that EP, but unfortunately left shortly after due to personal reasons. Thankfully, it wouldn’t be long before Johan Blomberg came onboard and they’ve had a consistent lineup since August 2015, closing 2016 hard with their first full-length release “Monophobia” in November of 2016. They would follow this up with their sophomore full-length “Known Darkness” with a shorter tracklist but an epic 11 plus minute closer in in August of 2019.

Unfortunately, as 2020 unfolded and the worldwide pandemic lockdowns were enforced, touring stopped. Thankfully, it did not keep FORGETTING THE MEMORIES down and they continued writing new material in isolation and were afforded the time to write enough material for a full-length new album. The first announcement came with opening single “The Solstice Rebirth” released on May 14, 2021 with three more released before dropping the full album. Upon releasing the new single the band stated, “This song is about manipulative behavior that occurs more often than it should. We try to put ourselves in the perspective where you are being manipulated into doing things for others’ cause. With that, you’ll live in that mindset until the darkness has swallowed you whole. You’ll become self-destructive and dangerous to others but mostly to yourself.” With 10 new tracks mixed and mastered by Buster Odeholm – who has done work for Swedish prog metal band VILDHJARTA and deathcore band HUMANITY’S LAST BREATH – the band puts forth a weighty album that is lyrically haunting and deals with issues such as personal setbacks, world-weariness, anger, melancholy and wistfulness.

This time around, it seems FORGETING THE MEMORIES are completely throwing off the mantle of metalcore with its emo-flavored vocals with hints of bad-ass heaviness and leaned heavily into crafting heavy metal brutality with “Vemod”. While you still have some clean singing and even tinges into the progressively minded PERIPHERY, they border on blackened death metal and eight-string, oddly-timed staccato punctuations with their new record. On the opener “Beneath the Creek” it may start out with some slow, almost melodic guitar musing with the bass guitar punctuating a beat, but quickly crunches into heaviness and brutal vocals from the veteran Bastian Kempe. It becomes unrelenting, featuring a nearly 30 second long blast beat beatdown into death growls and even black metal screams at times, it could be seen as quite the headscratcher, but I see it as carving out new melodic and creative boundaries. The single “The Solstice Rebirth” sees more introspection, sounding at times like tubular bells mixed with MESHUGGAH levels of perplexity and math rock, all in less than 4 minutes. You get almost traditional groove metal on “Cowards Tongue” with LORNA SHORE levels of vocal complexity, to harmonic complexity with female choir overdubs in portions of “From Soot” and ends with arguably the brutalist cut in both subject matter and substance with “Trauma”. Expect the unexpected from “Vemod”, dare to explore new possibilities and you’ll end up loving this direction.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Beneath the Creek
2.  The Solstice Rebirth
3. The Lake
4. A Voice in the Static
5. Mask ov Lies
6. Cowards Tongue
7. From Soot
8. Cursed Earth
9. Komma Skall
10. Trauma
Lineup:
Gustav Holst – Guitar
Lukas Olsson – Bass & Vocals
Adrian Lyxell – Guitar
Bastian Kempe – Vocals
Johan Blomberg – Drums
Record Label: Long Branch Records
     


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