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Susperia - The Lyricist

The Lyricist
by Justin "Witty City" Wittenmeier at 05 March 2018, 7:41 AM

Having enjoyed "Unlimted" many years ago upon its release, I lost sight of the band but was really looking forward to getting back into them when I discovered I was reviewing this album.  Honestly, I am dissapointed by this album.  Everything about it screams "middle of the road" or "a paint by numbers" metal album.  Every instrument plays just competent enough to get a rythm or beat going; it isn't the worst album I've heard, and they are all talented, well known musicians in the scene, but there is simply very little here that sparks my interests enough to want to come back to this after I submit this review.  The biggest problem with the album lies in the songwriting itelf: SUSPERIA really can't seem to decide how they want to sound.  I understand, and appreciate, the need of having variety in music but at some point enough is enough and everything become uneven and disjointed, resulting in a very difficult listen.  "Entered," is a power metal song, "Heretic" is more blackened metal,  "The Lyricist" is defintely Black Metal, and "My Darkest Moment," is slow and brooding.  I could go but hopeuflly the point has been made: the album is just too all over the place.

The first track begins strong, with rumbling riffs and bass but it clearly isn't melodic black metal or even really thrash; its a very heavy mixture of a solid metal sound and power metal.  Bernt Fjellestad is a very capable vocalist; he can sing clean vocals (as he does on this opening track) as easily as he can do a black metal shriek or a Death Metal growl.  He often switches between the styles effortlessly.  However, just as often the vocals are a layered mix of the different styles; this would be ok if it was used spareingly but otherwise its tedious and a strain on the ears. "Heretic" finds him going for a much more extreme vocal delivery and I find it works a lot better this way but after a couple minutes he switches back to his cleans but this time its more gruff.  Again, this worked pretty well.  However, the double layered vocals come back and I just lose interest.  I don't need to hear one million different Fjellestads.  This approach might work for a vocalist who can't sing that well or switch between various styles quickly but he can obviously do this so I don't see the point in having so much going on vocally.

The last few tracks, "Feed The Fire," "Whore of Man," and "Come Alive," feautre a more focused sound but its all the same riffs, bass, and drums I've heard a thousand times from bands who do it a thousand times better. It isn't a bad album but it certainly is average and definitely needed more focused song writing and direction.

Songwriting: 5
Originality: 5
Memorability: 5
Production: 5

2 Star Rating

1. I Entered
2. Heretic
3. The Lyricist
4. My Darkest Moment
5. Day I Died
6. Void
7. Feed The Fire
8. Whore of Man
9. Come Alive
Memnock – Bass
Tjodalv – Drums
Elvorn – Guitars
Cyrus – Guitars
Bernt Fjellestad – Vocals
Record Label: Agonia Records


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