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Reveries End - Edge of Dark Waters

Reveries End
Edge of Dark Waters
by Lauren Fonto at 18 July 2016, 12:12 PM

"Edge of Dark Waters" is the debut full-length album of Finland's REVERIES END. Songs from their previous two demos ("Beneath the Silent Shades" and "Empyreal Form") make an appearance on this album. Vocalist Sariina Tani is a valuable asset to the band, with a pleasant mezzo-soprano voice. Tani gives a powerful crescendo on "Mute," wherein her vocals and the drums build in intensity after a quiet interlude. Her voice is powerful in the chorus of "Descent," as well as emotional. The same can be said of powerful closer "Reveries End." Her harmonies are well-done as well, notably on "Hamartia." She also brings some ghostly chanting to "Scales of Night," which adds interest to a track which was one of the high points of the album. Unfortunately, I didn't enjoy Tani's harsh vocals as much as I did her clean vocals. Although her harsh vocals grew on me after a few listens, they weren't a high point of the album for me.

Jaako Oksanen's bass playing gives a subtle warmth to the songs, and is better heard through headphones or earphones – when I listened to the album via a CD-player, I struggled to hear the bass at all. Veli-Matti Olkinuora and Kristian Valjakka do a mostly good job on the guitars. Almost every song begins with guitars and/or other instruments fading in, which became predictable near the end of the album. The mournful guitars on opener "A Thousand Facets" add to the melancholic mood of the song. On the album as a whole, the guitars contribute to a sound that is sad and beautiful at the same time. Although music doesn't have to be highly technical to be enjoyable, overall the simple solos lacked that combination of memorability and originality. The arpeggiated riffs near the "Hamartia" did stand out for me, however. The contrasts between the soft, acoustic interludes and the distorted electric guitar parts added some interesting textures to the tracks.

Timo Klinga mostly stays in the background, providing a solid rhythm which keeps the rest of the music ticking along. I liked the build-up in intensity on "Mute", and Klinga's syncopated rhythm on the intro of "Hamartia" is attention-grabbing. The catchy intro on "Tomorrow's Fool" got my head banging a little bit. "Reveries End" sees good use of echoing toms, jiving well with the reverb-tinged guitar progression. This track, too, was a high point for me. It sounds somewhat different from the other tracks, without sounding like a completely different band. The few seconds of quiet before full-on drums and guitars enter is another effective contrast. Klinga alternates between a full sound and gently-played cymbals. At first I struggled a bit to enjoy this album, but its gothic charms won me over in the end. The album did feel somewhat generic in places, but I think a strength which can be built on is the use of variations in intensity and interesting background textures (provided by both drums and guitars).

Songwriting: 6
Originality: 5
Memorability:6
Production: 8

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. A Thousand Facets
2. Unwind
3. Mute
4. Decent
5. Tomorrow’s Fool
6. Hamartia
7. Scales of Night
8. Reveries End
Lineup:
Jaako Oksanen – Bass
Timo Klinga – Drums
Veli-Matti Olkinuora – Guitars
Kristian Valjakka – Guitars
Sariina Tani – Vocals
Record Label: Sliptrick Records
     


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