Serotonal - _The Futility of Trying to Avoid the Unavoidable_
(Independent, 2007)
by: Pedro Azevedo (7 out of 10)
Serotonal are a band from Liverpool, featuring Anathema's former vocalist from the early '90s, Darren White. Either the previous sentence means something to you, or else you should probably just skip to the next goregrind review.

While I was pleased to note that the nifty album title seemed to indicate at least some kind of connection to doom, the band name Serotonal seemed a bit odd. Derived from serotonin, a compound that whose level in your brain can either lower or elevate your mood. A band named after something that is used in antidepressants may seem odd, but I was still intrigued to find out what Darren and his bandmates had been up to since forming the band some four or five years back.

_The Futility of Trying to Avoid the Unavoidable_ is quite far removed from anything metal, so do not expect a return to doom/death here. Apart from the more rocking final track, the music is very introspective and tranquil, sedate even, with a lot of acoustic guitar and piano, soft percussion, electronic touches, and occasional electric guitar joining in. Darren White only sounds like what his old fans will be looking for on "You Can Love Again", which is possibly the best track along with "Ravine".

While the five tracks on offer are neither revolutionary nor exceptional, they still make for a damn solid and pleasant while, as they are varied enough and seem honest enough to deserve the listener's attention. Hopefully Serotonal will have a chance to return with a new record at some point, as they may yet evolve into something quite interesting.


(article published 13/7/2008)

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