Posted on January 18, 2010 -
This is Amorphis’ seventh album. Now initially Amorphis started off as a Melodic Death Metal band and it is prominent in the first 3 albums. Many fans agree “Tales From The Thousand Lakes” is a work of genius. Then the next three albums evolved into more mainstream metal, with nevertheless complex arrangements. And now returns the new album Eclipse. I must say I prefer the Melodic Death Metal Amorphis to the Melodic/Heavy Metal Amorphis in the last three albums. Eclipse is a return to form, perhaps not truly – but only because the production is much better than Tales From The Thousand Lakes.
This is a grand album and the guys return with astounding new songs. The new vocalist is very good. He uses three types of vocals: death vocals, “growly” clean vocals and soft clean vocals. Two Moons is a heavy track with excellent keyboard parts and driving guitar parts. There are softer clean singing songs such as House Of Sleep and Born From Fire. I love the pianos in these songs. The vocalist (Tomi Jousten) sings his heart out in House Of Sleep. Fans of the repeated arpeggios with the guitars (in Tales) will love the chorus of this song. In the chorus the heavy guitars plays the expressive melody with one guitar and intense chords with the other. Born From Fire is similar with a majestic solo.
Leaves Scar is my favourite song and reminds me of “Black Winter Day” (from their second album). It’s quite a slow song, has a beautiful melody, and long drawn out death vocals. The combination of death vocals and guitars works brilliantly. The clean choruses are outstanding. The folk-like keyboard work brings the song to life.
Under a Soil starts off slow and moody with perfectly placed pianos but then progresses into a fast solo. It leads into the next song: Perkele, which is the heaviest song with lots of death vocals for the verses and clean vocals for the chorus. It’s a very dissonant moody song, and has a grandiose solo then ends on a very powerful and moody note. A good thing about Amorphis is that they don’t foolishly stick in solos every five seconds, but adorn each song gracefully. Solos are a good thing, but when a band concentrates on the solos ALONE, it gets tedious.
The Smoke and Brother Moon mostly have clean singing but have death vocals here and there that fit in perfectly. The Smoke Starts off with a piano to gentle strumming then proceeds to the verses. The verses have clean singing, but in the choruses death vocals join in that fits in perfectly. Again there is another beautiful solo and the chorus follows. Brother Moon starts off folk-style. At the 57-second mark a fine guitar riff is played. The song is sung in clean vocals until 3.04 where the death vocals come in. The drumming is great in this song.
Same Flesh has rather distorted guitars and Tomi shows his talent as an apt vocalist. This song is a bit slower and quite drawn out. The ending is very good, with an amazing melody being played. The album ends at Empty Opening, which features some angry singing to impressive background music.
This is an excellent beautiful Melodic Death metal CD. It shows Amorphis’ continuing progression to create a unique soundscape. Amorphis is Melodic Death but quite different compared to the speedy fast Gothenburg metal, even though Amorphis are from that area. It’s like Opeth. Opeth are a (progressive) Death Metal band, but they don’t have brutal lyrics, or play at top speed. Instead their music much is slower and they have poetic lyrics. In the same way, Amorphis is a slower Melodic Death metal band; with poetic lyrics, still maintaining the heaviness. It’s not your average metal album: it’s extremely emotive and atmospheric. The merger between folk and death metal is individual and almost undiscerning, because they fit together really well. Along with Tales, this album is greatly captivating and ambient. Few Metal bands are able to produce an album, which is both talented and atmospheric. Quite a lot of metal is brilliant, but don’t leave an emotive resonance. Opeth does, along with Amorphis. Words cannot really describe how grand this album is. Buy it!