Serenity - _The Name_
(Bestial, 1998)
by: Brian Meloon (8 out of 10)
Serenity are a new band on the Bestial roster, and the most impressive I've heard yet. Their style is similar to the gothic doom of labelmates God (reviewed in this issue), but their music is lighter, more gothic, and more classically (and neo-classically) oriented. It's definitely keyboard-heavy, as a lot of music is keyboard-driven, and there are several keyboard-only sections. There are a few sections where the music is guitar-driven as well, reminding me of older Crematory (especially _... Just Dreaming_). The keyboards employ a wide variety of tones, including orchestral patches, organ tones and uniquely synthesizer tones. The music is generally very melodic, with melodies in both the guitar and keyboard parts. Although the music is generally simple, there are a few rather intricate sections, all of which are handled with surprising aplomb. There are some spoken vocals and some clean male and female vocals. The female vocals are excellent, but the male vocals are just passable. Unlike God, and contrary to what you might expect from the music, there are no growled vocals at all. Still, with the melodic nature of the music, the absence of growled vocals isn't a big surprise. There are a lot of instrumental sections and three full-blown instrumentals (out of seven total tracks). As with God, the production could be sharper, but as power isn't the band's main concern, it isn't a big problem. Overall, this is a very impressive offering. Fans of bands like The Gathering should find it to their liking.

(article published 14/3/1999)

5/1/2007 Q Kalis 8.5 Serenity - Words Untold and Dreams Unlived
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