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   EMBRAZE
Katharsis
2002
Low Frequency Records
http://www.mastervox.fi/embraze


rating: 3/5

1. My Star
2. Beautiful Death
3. Fear
4. Sun Loves Moon
5. Filthy Angels
6. Subzero
7. Frozen Swan
8. Closed
9. Calm And Distant
10. Kiiminkijoki
11. Sinmaker
Finnish Embraze had enormous problems getting this album released. It was recorded already during the summer of 2001, but released in the fall of 2002 through Finnish Low Frequency Records. The band went to Lapland to record the album, and for that, built up a studio in a mansion by a lake in the middle of nowhere. The singer, Lauri Tuohimaa has a rather charismatic voice that varies between clean and a bit rougher styles. In comparison some similarities could be found in Ville Laihiala's (Sentenced) and Taneli Jarva's (The Black League) voices. Altti Veteläinen of Eternal Tears of Sorrow makes a guest appearance on the album offering us a bit of his growling. The music itself is a combination of Sentenced-ish gothic-kind of metal, a little power metal in the vein of, say, Angel Dust and with some even thrashy elements thrown in. The playing is on a solid level in general and Heidi Määttä's keyboards vary sounding like church organ, 70s prog synth and an accordion, but they don't get too prominent on the overall sound.

Nice guitar melodies, crispy riffs, semi-depressing lyrics and a rather melancholic atmosphere is what you'll get. A few songs do stand out on this one: the opener "My Star", the mellow (yet heavy) "The Sun Loves The Moon" , "Closed" and the cover of a finnish pop song "Kiiminkijoki". All in all, there isn't that much wrong with the album, the band just seems to have difficulties to rise to a new level. Still, if you're into melancholic (gothic) power metal and bands like Sentenced, Charon and maybe Draconian Times-era Paradise Lost, I can easily recommend this one.

submitted by Aleksi 01.01.2003

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