Kimaera - _Ebony Veiled_
(Stygian Crypt Productions, 2006)
by: Quentin Kalis (7 out of 10)
The debut album from these Lebanese doomsters explicitly thanks My Dying Bride, the "Gods of Doom Metal" (can't argue with that) for the "gloom and inspiration", and they incorporate violins, piano and female vocals into their mix. I don't think I need to mention where they lie on the doom metal spectrum...

They enhance the romantic side by utilising a number of anachronistic terms to imbue their lyrics a pseudo-archaic English air. The lyrics need more work to reach the poetic heights of their idols, but are still good -- more so if English is their second or third language, as seems likely. However, the more poetic passages are the work of vocalist Sabine, who has now left the band. They may be able to find another heavenly voiced siren as a replacement, but finding a lyricist of similar calibre may prove to be more difficult. Nor is she the only one to have left the band: the drummer and keyboardist have also left for greener pastures abroad, so it's unclear what direction the band may take in the future.

That is a concern for another time though. At the moment, Kimaera have recorded a highly accessible debut shrouded in atmosphere that is perhaps a bit sweet to the ear, notwithstanding the typical doom/death growls. (Think Theatre of Tragedy circa _Velvet Darkness They Fear_, rather than _Serenades_ era Anathema.) Despite sailing a bit too close to dark goth metal rubbish, they retain sufficient bite to remain ensconced in the doom tradition, presenting an acceptable , if otherwise unremarkable debut.


(article published 26/1/2008)

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