Saturnus - _Veronika Decides to Die_
(Firebox Records, 2006)
by: Pedro Azevedo (8 out of 10)
It has taken Danish doomsters Saturnus six years to resurface with a follow-up to _Martyre_, but they waste no time before they impress the listener on _Veronika Decides to Die_. Never mind the album bearing the same title as a book by Brazilian writer Paulo Coelho; the ten minute opening track "I Long" clearly proves that Saturnus have been brewing some very good music over the last six years. There has been no real change in style since _Martyre_, as the band alternates between tranquil passages and doom/death numbers. There are also still some shorter, more chorus-oriented cuts with those half-sung Darren White sound-alike vocals they started using back on _Martyre_, but they are used less frequently this time. The balance between the various elements is better on this new album, in the sense that the doom/death tracks and growled vocals seem to receive more attention than last time, instead of the rock 'n' roll stuff that damaged _Martyre_'s consistency. The general feel and atmosphere of the music remains the same since their debut _Paradise Belongs to You_ though: melodic, romantic doom metal.

As the eight tracks on _VDtD_ develop, Saturnus show that at this stage in their career they are neither looking for easy hits nor willing to sacrifice expansive songwriting when they feel it is appropriate. Nothing on the album seems rushed; the songs have a way of being long without coming across as boring (assuming you like the style), even if they can at times become a bit meandering. This is the sound of a band that is comfortable with who they are, who dispense with any radical attempts to innovate for the sake of being different. Saturnus continue to create the kind of emotional melodies and vocal passages that made them a strong name in the doom metal milieu in the first place; the material sounds fresh, inspired and mature, even if rather safe. Overall this is an improvement on _Martyre_ on some levels, and a very solid album.


(article published 18/5/2006)

8/12/2000 P Azevedo Saturnus: For the Loveless Lonely Lives
8/12/2000 P Azevedo 8 Saturnus - Martyre
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