Solitude Aeturnus!

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Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Rock Chestwell on Sat May 10, 2008 5:07 am

you guys heard this band? the first album, Into The Depths of Sorrow? Here's my review for massmovement Smile



Solitude Aeturnus – Into The Depths of Sorrow

With my track record of hundreds of listens you’d think reviewing an album as blissful as this would be easy… but I repeatedly find myself half way through the album, nodding like a mental patient and not one key tapped. Hard life! So yes, knowing where I stand (or sit) with Into The Depths Of Sorrow, perhaps I should extrapolate…

Solitude Aeturnus formed in 1987 by riff master guitarist John Perez, stabilized a lineup by 1989, recorded this, their debut, in 1990 and finally after much recording and record deal tribulations released Sorrow on Roadrunner in 1991. Sorrow remains a classic of the genre and I can’t heap platitudes high enough. I don’t remember where I first picked up a cassette of this though it was a long time ago, and I know aside from Candlemass’ Nightfall, Sorrow was one of my few experiences of the doom metal genre. Like Nightfall, I was lucky as I started at the top and nearly two decades down the line, both albums remain as fresh and vital as they ever have.

Now this doom metal style and genre may be anathema (pun) to many, but I think at some stage surely any genuine music fan can appreciate the good in any genre, and that’s the angle I try to come from. And this is good. Very good. Basically what you have with Solitude is something of a take on the Sabbath blueprint, without the hints of psychedelia or 70’s rock. This is unashamed Heavy Metal, but without the cheese so many confuse as inherent in the genre. If you can imagine everything that might be cheesy about Metal, then dump it, heap tons of heavy flowing riffs, sublime vocals and smooth melodic leads, wrap it in an almost claustrophobic blanket of doom yet leaving it free to breath and envelope the listener… this is what you get.

Vocalist Rob Lowe is the secret weapon in the arsenal, possessing a masterful clear tone which compliments the flowing doom of the band. No growling or OTT operatics, though Lowe does hit the occasional higher note, much of his vocal lines intertwine with the open power chords, leading the narrative and easing in and out of the inevitable longer musical passages and superb solo sections. The album has always given the feel of a journey and you never really think ‘here comes the solo’, you just find yourself in it and enjoying it. At least, I do!

After the haunting intro, Return to Despair exemplifies Solitude’s take on doom with double bass drums rumbling throughout, some fine soloing and a nice doom section to play out. Unlike some doom bands who lose power as they drop the riff count or use supposedly ‘atmospheric’ keyboards, this is no snoozefest, Solitude keep up the tempo and Transcending Divinity, again showcases the bands style; no pandering to trends, just more heavy flowing doom! It’s just the sound of a band who know what they’re doing and know how to do it really well. Or they got damn lucky!

There are so many tracks on this album that verbal descriptions won’t do justice. Beautiful acoustic sections, crushing doom passages, incredible yet tasteful guitar interplay, soaring and mournful vocals, Sorrow has it all. I haven’t touched on the lyrical content which I covers the gamut of positive, religious and depressed themes. While there is an occasional Christian tinge, I won’t hold that against them in the same was as I don’t hold Slayer to account for their cartoon shock lyrics.

All I can say is that if you don’t balk at the thought of doom metal, or you’d like to check out the genre but don’t know where to start, then get this album. It should be an essential part of any self respecting metalhead’s collection and will always remain a classic musical statement of intent and attained vision.


(fucking hell this site is posh! nice options there like. bulletpoints n stuff!)

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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Panda on Sat May 10, 2008 9:39 am

<reserved>

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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Rock Chestwell on Sat May 10, 2008 12:05 pm

Sad

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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Luke()ram on Sat May 10, 2008 1:46 pm

Rob Low? what, like Wayne's world Rob Lowe???
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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Avagddu on Sat May 10, 2008 6:45 pm

'"Gelatainous cube eats legendary Doom band!" Well, I love it.'
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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Rock Chestwell on Sat May 10, 2008 9:31 pm

it's south wales massive all over again!

pfft!

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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Andi on Sun May 11, 2008 4:39 am

Good review. Good to see you can waffle as much on paper as you can in real life.

I haven't got this album, I'll look out for it.
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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Panda on Sun May 11, 2008 4:56 am

Andi wrote:Good review. Good to see you can waffle as much on paper as you can in real life.

I haven't got this album, I'll look out for it.

It's pretty good Mad

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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  BVRZERK on Mon May 12, 2008 1:59 am

extrapolate - word of the day
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Re: Solitude Aeturnus!

Post  Rock Chestwell on Sat May 17, 2008 2:47 am

i try Wink

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