Jul 2, 2012
Akem Manah - Beneath ...
Musically, this band is very solid and obviously very accomplished. The playing is top-shelf and they have obviously done a lot of work making sure the production values are top quality. 'Beneath' starts off in a very death metal styled direction and at first it sounds a little clichéd and recycled but that soon disappears as the track heads into pure death-doom. As the song unwinds, there are wonderful passages of piano and strings and there are many ambient breaks within the overly long piece. The real doom metal side of the band however only really comes out in short bursts. For most of the track this sounds like a very meandering version of My Dying Bride only far more unique. The only problem is after a few minutes, it just seems to get seriously dull. The track has many complex passages and it is during those passages that the track seems to get a bit lost.
The vocals are generic death-doom growls mixed with even more generic clean vocals which detract from the very good lyrical elements that the track has. The highlights of the track which is odd for me to say is when they up the tempo and move away from the usual death-doom tendencies. It is unusual for me to like the death metal elements in what is primarily a doom metal album but it is those moments that seem to shine on the track he most while the rest just seems a bit boring. There is still a lot to like and if this was 10 minutes shorter, I would have liked it a hell of a lot more. As it is, this is still an above average release by death-doom standards but in light of how good their début album was, it is a mild disappointment....6.5/10.
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