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Somber Serenity - Singular (8/10) - Germany - 2002

Genre: Dark Metal
Label: Medusa
Playing time: 61:32
Band homepage: Somber Serenity

Tracklist:

  1. In Solitude Divine
  2. Tragedy Star
  3. Goddess Of Light
  4. The Severance
  5. The Sufferer
  6. Last Scion Of Winter
  7. Swallow The Sun
  8. Nemesis My Childe
Somber Serenity - Singular
Dark Metal from my state-capital of Munich. Have to be supported, my countrymen, don't they?

OK, what does the music bring. Basic basis is a mix of Doom/Death in the MY DYING BRIDE-vein and Gothic Metal-influences of the unkitsch-kind, while the gentlemen also take their share of Black Metal ("Tragedy Star") or Death Metal ("The Severance") as well, but they mix these influences well, thus building a good tension within the songs that at times can truly hold the listener in a vice-like grip.

SOMBER SERENITY come up with some very good riffs and they manage to create an interesting atmosphere by the varying intensity of the compositions. Often doomy and dark, the clear, the wailing clear vocals of Daniel Varoß add to it, by the variable singing, which reaches from clear vox to Death-grunts and higher screams, in union with he atmosphere and the songs' structure more than once a certain OPETH-feeling is creeping into the music.

Masterpiece of this very variable mixture without doubt is the 14+ minute-closer "Nemesis My Childe", where they masterfully combine the different moods and atmosphere in a way that makes this track stand out as the pinnacle of their creation to date.

Despite the very mature sounding song-writing a few of the songs have turned out a little too long, taking away some of the mostly sluggish dynamics of the album. But if you have no problems with that, then there is only surprisingly little to criticise with this debut, which sounds impressively mature for a first effort.

The categorisation "Dark Metal" surely is a very far stretched within the scene, but in this case I can put SOMBER SERENITY in there without a doubt. While they (understandably) do not reach the mentioned bands' level (yet), fans of them should take a good listen into "Singular"!

Alexander Melzer



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