Dismal Euphony - _Autumn Leaves: The Rebellion of Tides_
(Napalm Records, 1997)
by: Henry Akeley (8 out of 10)
Another impressive release from this talented foursome, which differs somewhat from their previous material. Like their earlier releases, _Autumn Leaves_ is of very high quality, displaying the band's artful blending of classically-inspired melody, gorgeous female vocals, and semi-progressive metallic techniques, including plentiful black-metallish rasps. Yet compared to their previous effort, the marvelous _Soria Moria Slott_, the songs here are more compact, in two senses. First, the production features a much more prominent guitar, while beautifully balancing everything else in a dense and crystalline sonic totality. _SMS_, by contrast, had a much more wide-open sound, the faraway buzz of guitar opening up a vast acoustic space for the wispy keyboard melodies and angelic vocals. Now, the melodies vie with the rhythm guitar for sonic room. Additionally, the songs here are generally shorter than the more sprawling compositions of _SMS_ - but they arguably make up for their lessened length by incorporating more frequent and more drastic variations. Reactions to these changes will no doubt differ... Personally, I prefer the band's earlier recordings, but that's not to say that this isn't pretty cool, for it certainly is that - check out Keltziva's awesome vocals on "Simply Dead", the musical roller-coaster "Carven", the darkly anthemic feel of "Remembrance of a Shroud", and so on. However, I could definitely live without the Skinny Puppy emulation on "Splendid Horror", not to mention the ten minutes of pointless experimentation that close out the album. But maybe that's just me.

(article published 16/10/1997)

2/5/1997 P Azevedo Dismal Euphony: Dismal Thoughts
8/12/1999 A Wasylyk 8.5 Dismal Euphony - All Little Devils
1/1/1998 P Azevedo 9 Dismal Euphony - Soria Moria Slott
11/18/1996 S Hoeltzel 8 Dismal Euphony - Soria Moria Slott
8/12/1996 S Hoeltzel 7 Dismal Euphony - Dismal Euphony
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