Eternal Tears of Sorrow - _Vilda Mannu_
by: David Rocher (
Now, this is a -damn- good surprise. With a name as feeble as "Eternal Tears of Sorrow", I was more than readied to valiantly stand before a deluge of gooey tearful sweetness, in the rather infuriating ways of Theatre of Tragedy or MacBeth. It rapidly dawned upon me that I had been truly misled; as soon, in fact, as the swift introductory riff and massive rhythmic section of "Northern Doom" kicked in -- EToS in fact play a form of melodic, heavy Scandinavian death metal, and they do it rather well. Their music's sonorities are unusual enough, sounding like a melodious fusion of heavy metal and old traditional tunes, and definitely distant enough from the wearing tones of scene leaders In Flames; and these Finns also unmistakably know how to pick a catchy and memorable hookline. The sporadic insertion of keyboards succeeds in adding cold touches of atmosphere, but EToS are smart enough not to make this an overwhelming habit which could in have spoiled the goods. _Vilda Mannu_ demonstrates cool musicianship, and can pride itself in very good, creative metal music. EToS do indulge in female vocals twice on the album, but once again in a rather characteristic way: ethereal, soothing and laid back on one track, these chants almost sound scornful and cynically cold on the other, proving that this trio know how to keep clear of the faded paths taken by most nauseatingly bland users of such artefacts. With a nice, fat sound crafted by Ahti Kortelainen of the mythical Tico-Tico studios, EToS's second album reveals personality in their approach to death metal, and that is definitely the vein they want to delve deeper into -- I don't see that the scene really needs another In Flames clone out there, and obviously nor do EToS.
(article published 7/7/1999)
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