Morphia - _One Last Embrace_
(Dark Balance, 2009)
by: Quentin Kalis (no rating)
After a trio of albums, Dutch romantic doom-mongers Morphia disintegrated in 2008, but not before performing a swansong gig. Aware that this would be their final moment, serious effort has been placed into realising this DVD, independently of the musical merits. The recording quality is good, and a decent selection of songs from their albums is performed, albeit with a bias towards the middle one, presumably their most successful album. Multiple camera angles are used, switching rapidly between cameras creating a kinetic and dynamic vibe, but not so busy as to induce epileptic fits. Several past members are guest performers, and the performance is generally strong and engaging. An audio (CD) version of the performance is including along with some other bells and whistles. Considering the medium-low budget they likely had to work with, they did the best they could. For those who have heard and have enjoyed Morphia before, I cannot think of a single reason why you would not want to have this CD.

As to the actual music, I feel that Morphia broke up too soon. They were developing a signature style, but they were still too heavily indebted to bands such as My Dying Bride and the lyrics needed serious work, all too often sounding like cliché teenage goth poetry, as demonstrated by this snippet from "Fading Beauty": "I cry out to the blackened sky / As your beauty slowly dies". Nought that can be done about that now, and I wouldn't recommend a casual purchase of this DVD / CD.


(article published 27/1/2010)

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