Friday, October 23, 2009

Saattue - Vuoroveri (2009)

Vuoroveri is the second album from Finland's Saattue, a doom metal band who are a lot more melodic and uptempo than, say countrymen Shape of Despair. In fact, Saattue remind me often of a slowed down, doom Amorphis, but with the lyrics sung in Finnish. Also Ajattara without the black metal. This may not be the most mind blowing doom effort of late, but it's atmospheric and catchy, and diverse enough in its flow of laments that it won't bore you.

The tracks are generally anchored by slow, chugging rhythms while synthscapes are thrown over the top for atmosphere, and Tuukka Koskinen's vocals range from bloated death grunts to an edgy, clean style which drives the crawling compositions through their glorious heights and sodden lows. Tracks like "Luopio" and "Itsensä herra" glimmer with haunting, epic atmospheres that smother the slow, serpentine guitars like a ritual about to come to fruition. Songs like "Taakka" are more brutal and depressing, while "Verenperimä" is epic with some lovely acoustic guitars.

Vuoroveri has a professional mix, not surprisingly since they're out on Spikefarm. You can hear everything clearly, nothing left to the imagination. This is a pleasant and harrowing album to listen to, pleasant in that none of the songs become dull or compacent and harrowing in that it maintains a heavy bombast throughout. The album is not entirely memorable, but if you long for a doomier alternate to Amorphis or Ajattara then this is right in your zone.

Highlights: Luopio, Itsensä herra, Taakka

Verdict: Win [7.5/10]

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