Promises - _In the Pharmacy_
(Metal Breath Productions, 2007)
by: Quentin Kalis (7 out of 10)
After a hiatus of Metallica proportions, Czech quintet Promises have released the follow-up to their 2000 debut, apparently due to personal conflicts that nearly resulted in a split. They perform "melodic doom rock", but this self-coined description bears the same relation to reality as Scientologists. There is nothing remotely doom-like here, and instead they perform what can be described as emotive alternative metal. It's a respectable interpretation, just not doom. The vocalist does a decent job, never straying from clean vocals, remaining emotive without descending into overwrought gothic hand wringing -- the kind that makes you wish that the vocalist would stop singing about blowing out his brains and just do it, if only to stop the incessant whining. _In the Pharmacy_'s song structures do tend to be strongly conventional verse-chorus-verse numbers, and songs such as "Meds" do stand a good chance on the alternative dancefloor.

Their Czech homeland is belied by their evocation of Finnish melancholy, and the eleven pills contained in this dosage is prescribed for those whose tastes run to Finnish melancholy such as latter-day Amorphis or Sentenced, but is contra-indicated for black and death metal fans. Be grateful -- I had plenty more I didn't use!


(article published 4/4/2008)

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