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Laika - Somnia Award winner

by Alex Kirmayer at 30 September 2014, 10:51 PM

I've heard the name LIAKA a few times before in my life, though I'm not sure that it wasn't in relation to said soviet dog, but all I've heard about them was pretty good. So I've received the album for review, expecting to hear a new school melodic death metal album, hoping for interesting parts, because hey, who can actually make a good melodic death album these days? Boy was I wrong…

The album opens with “The Restless Mind”, a piano intro, with a kind of looped clock sample which is the weak point, the end of the loop is very audible and doesn't flow quite as a ticking clock should. Immediately after the intro, we plunge straight to action with “Escalation Of Terror”, and wow.. Sound is old school melodic death metal, dirty distortion on the guitars, loud and clear bass, very clear drums, old school riffs, all in all reminds me of AT THE GATES.

Next song is the title track, “Somnia”. It starts with heavy groove on the guitars, with the piano making another appearance. Again, AT THE GATES and AMON AMARTH through and through, very nice work! It is very rare that a new band succeeds in bringing back older sound, and here they have. It's a great old school track and album through and through. Melodic leads, riffs we've all come to expect from older greats like said bands, just wow…

"Fidelity” is a different (kind of) story. More grooves, same endless dose of head-bang educing, old school melodic death, but here with elements from earlier LAMB OF GOD albums, mind=blown.

"Caligae A Galea” is an AMON AMARTH-like piece, just a bit longer than your usual piece, it's about 5:15 long, with a nice overdriven bass and keys break, all in all an interesting piece.

In “Dream Of Nothing” the piano returns, followed by drums and keys for a few rounds, and then turns into another AMON AMARTH like piece, same line of music as before, really reminding me of said bands, only this track is an instrumental, which is a rarity by itself. Very well made, not boring, good technique level on the lead guitars, the bass following the same riff for the whole length of the piece basically, but nonetheless quite interesting.

The next track, “The Immortal” continues along the same line, AT THE GATES-like vocals, AMON AMARTH-like music, it would only fit if these guys were from Sweden, but they're from Canada!

"Predictions (Tide Bearer)” is a blend of power metal riffs with melodic death metal sound, easily my favorite track from the whole album, more technical than the rest of the album, faster pace, an old school melodic death metal beast, with very interesting lines both for the stringed instruments - the guitars and bass, and the keyboards. The highest point of the album, which is saying a lot considering the fact that the album is filled with practically nothing but high points.

"Invaders” the last track of the album, is quite along the line of the previous track. Very technical, very melodic, quite complex riffs, complex keyboard line, not the easiest lines to stomach, but made me head-bang even more than the rest of the album. A mix of black metal and technical death metal. Very good.

All in all, the album is a masterpiece of a wide variety of genres, and I for one can't wait for the next release by this talented band, and am filled with hope they will not disappoint! Absolute masterpiece!

5 Star Rating

1. The Restless Mind
2. Escalation Of Terror
3. Somnia
4. Fidelity
5. Caligae A Galea
6. Dream Of Nothing
7. The Immortal
8. Predictions (Tide Bearer)
9. Invaders
Jordan Dorge  - Vocals
Steve Tedham - Synth
Ian Garraway - Guitars
Alex Kling - Guitars
Mike Mason - Bass
Blair Garraway - Drums (Session)
Record Label: Filth Regime Records


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Edited 04 February 2023

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