album : Emerald Forest and the Blackbird
artist : Swallow the Sun
genre : Melodic Doom/Death Metal
year : 2012
February received a gloomy welcome by one of the pioneers of melodic doom metal genre. Swallow the Sun, much like their name, have almost sucked the life out of their listeners, and continue doing so. Unlike their fellow doom players, this Finnish band presents a mixture of discontinuous death metal empowered by their ever growing relation with hopeless misery. Emerald Forest and the Blackbird is a tricky release, as the band has decided to throw in quite a lot of passages that take time to fuck your happiness. As someone who has adored this band, my intimacy with the band’s songwriting has gone down a few levels, and I can say that since I gladly posed for a photograph with a smiling face while the track Hate, Lead the Way played. I should have gotten up, snatched the cam and thrown it out into the snow because Swallow the Sun was trying to fill the room with hate! Screw that, after repeated plays I realized this track has clambered it’s way towards being one of the strongest track on Emerald Forest and the Blackbird.
For some odd reason I see a strong Katatonia influence on track number two This Cut Is The Deepest, but those of you who haven’t been through Katatonia‘s ultra-bleak music would find this song to be an immediate remedy to your problem as your own scar would seem unimportant in front of it. As the album progresses, keyboard player Aleksi Munter becomes the hunter, as he takes it upon himself to shoot down the shitty keyboardists in the metal scene by providing a memorable background score for Swallow the Sun‘s fifth full-length. Another track worth mentioning is Labyrinth Of London (Horror pt. IV) because whatever it is the name means the delight of hearing the double bass, screechy vocals and the agreeable pauses can only be expressed by replaying the track. Other honorable mentions are Of Death And Corruption and Night Will Forgive Us, they carry a quality which should have been picked up by the remaining part of the album.
Gauging by the songs on Emerald Forest and the Blackbird, I believe the tunes on a few of the tracks have been heard before. And the other let down is the songs fail to inject into your veins and vigorously spread the grief. Once the album is done, life is back to normal. I ended up abusing the next thing I saw on the television, the way I used to before I heard the album. The band’s preferred bait of gathering all the pessimism in one place ends up sounding incomplete. Their attempt to cast a shroud of emotional darkness isn’t totally successful on Emerald Forest and the Blackbird. Anyways it won’t make a lot of difference if you gather their entire discography in a single playlist and play the tracks in shuffle mode. This way the weak songs on Emerald Forest and the Blackbird would go unnoticed and all that would remain are the shining sections that never fail to depress.
Rating : 3/5