12 October, 2011

Insomnium: One For Sorrow – new album


“As daylight is saying goodbye and a wind of falling leafs and raindrops are the only ones knocking on your door, it’s finally time for the release of INSOMNIUM's new epic album ‘One For Sorrow’, ” states Century Media. And since they know that we know that Finns are experts in “Autumn soundtracks”, and in case we are still not hyped by the idea alone, they are allowing us to hear INSOMNIUM's album in all its epic greatness here at Hails And Horns. (The stream has since ended.) Listening, I’m barely able to contain myself enough to tell you that the album is already out in Finland and will be released on October 17, 2011 throughout the rest of Europe and on October 18, 2011 in North America, on Century Media Records. You should buy the album that is “as epic as it is melodic, as melancholic as it is majestic and as brutal as it is beautiful” through here (INSOMNIUM).

“The name, ‘One  For Sorrow’, comes from a traditional children's nursery rhyme,” [commented guitarist Ville Friman] “There are ten different scenarios in the original rhyme; likewise there are ten different songs and stories on our album. I think ‘One For Sorrow’ truly depicts what this album is all about: bereavement, grief and loss.” [And through time we came to expect nothing less from the Finns]

“To call INSOMNIUM a death metal band is to do them a grave disservice,” [states firmly the press release] “The upcoming album is such an amalgamation of styles that pigeonholing them into a single category would be to rob the band of its true complexity and ignore the very essence of its sound. Recalling art-metal titans CULT OF LUNA at one turn and brutal visionaries AMON AMARTH, ‘One For Sorrow’ displays the true musical breadth of a band that has clearly come into its own on this, their debut album for Century Media.”

You’ll find the video for the track ‘Through The Shadows’, off this champion of a release below as well as ‘Regain The Fire’ video, both created by Obscure Entertainment. If you click here (previous post) you’ll be able to enjoy the sights and sounds of ‘Weather The Storm’, the tune INOMNIUM recorded with DARK TRANQUILLITY's Mikael Stanne as guest vocalist:

“… But, by and large [read all about INSOMNIUM tinkering cautiously with Gothenburg metal style here at AllMusic], INSOMNIUM still seem happy to cater to genre loyalists and other sticklers to tradition with alternately brutal and morose mini-epics like ‘Song Of The Blackest Bird’ and ‘Lay The Ghost To Rest’, as well as multiple examples of melo-death-by-numbers. Some are kick-drum-happy bruisers barked with Cookie Monster fervor and streaked with serpentine synth accoutrements (‘Only One Who Waits’, ‘Every Hour Wounds’, ‘Regain The Fire’); others complex studies in dark and light, both vocal and instrumental (‘Unsung’ and the title track); yet all have their modest rate of innovation justified by INSOMNIUM's reliably high-caliber songwriting and performance,” [stated Eduardo Rivadavia, AllMusic]:

INSOMNIUM: Meandering Through The Shadows – courtesy of Century Media Records

INSOMNIUM: Unsung – courtesy of Century Media Records


Formed in 1997 in Joensuu, Finland, by Markus Hirvonen (drums), Ville Friman (guitar) and Niilo Sevänen (vocals and bass) soon joined by guitarist Ville Vänni, INSOMNIUM released two demos that led to a deal with Candlelight Records. INSOMNIUM married Scandinavian death metal with traditional Finnish tunes on their debut full-length 2002's ‘In The Halls Of Awaiting’. Darker and more challenging second album ‘Since The Day It All Came Down’ was released in 2004:

“Some Scandinavian death metallers, in fact, are honest enough to admit that their scene can be something of an inside joke (much like techno/rave music). But the '90s and 2000s have also seen a wave of Nordic death metal bands that are highly melodic, and Finland's INSOMNIUM is part of that trend. … The CD's pluses by far outweigh its minuses, and admirers of bands like AT THE GATES and KHOLD will find ‘Since The Day It All Came Down’ to be a respectable, generally well-crafted example of the melodic death metal style,” [commented AllMusic's Alex Henderson – more here]

The breakthrough for INSOMNIUM came in form of their third album 2006's ‘Above The Weeping World’, featuring long-time friend Aleksi Munter (SWALLOW THE SUN) on keyboards. During its first week the album peaked at number 9 on the Finnish Album Charts, its success taking the band on long European tours. Listen to the album here (BandCamp) or below, courtesy Candlilight Record:

“When bad boys mature, they don’t necessarily quit being bad boys, but they do become more complex and multi-faceted,” [was inspired or something that day AllMusic reviewer A. Henderson] “They may evolve into the Marlon Brando of “The Godfather”, instead of the punky young Brando of “A Streetcar Named Desire”. And in death metal, that quest for maturity has given us the nuanced world of melodic death metal - a world that death metal's stubborn, myopic purists denounce as watered down, but a world in which engaging albums like ‘Above The Weeping World’ are created.” [Definitely read more here]


INSOMNIUM: Above The Weeping World


2009's ‘Across The Dark’ entered the Finnish Album Charts at number 5, picking up a couple of awards in their homeland for Best Band and Best Album along the way. The album once again featured Aleksi Munter as guest keyboardist alongside PROFANE OMEN's vocalist Jules Näveri. Again, you can listen to the entire album as well as buy it here (BandCamp) and below, courtesy Candlelight Record:

“INSOMNIUM's melodies and harmonies are undeniably attractive, and their ability to combine aggression with nuance and intricacy serves them well. A lot of that aggression comes from Sevänen, whose Cookie Monster vocals are fun to listen to even though one wishes that he were consistently easy to understand. … ‘Across The Dark’ is well worth hearing if one has a taste for Nordic death metal that is unapologetically melodic,” [advised A. Hendeson, AllMusic – more here] [“Bit of folk metal, pinch of doom, some thrashing, a whole lot of timeless melodies and progressive twists and there you have it: ingredients of the masterpiece,” [added INSOMNIUM:]


INSOMNIUM: Across The Dark


INSOMNIUM features: Niilo Sevänen – vocals and bass, Ville Friman – guitar and vocals, Markus Vanhala – guitar and Markus Hirvonen – drums



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