Monday, March 6, 2023

In Thy Dreams - Stream of Dispraised Souls EP (1997)

Stream of Dispraised Soul is a melodic death metal EP, from Sweden, in 1997. Can you guess already what this is going to sound like? Well, pat yourself on the back, because you are absolutely right, it's a take on the At the Gates formula, but I'd say in this case there's a very healthy dose of Dark Tranquillity due to the more dominantly incorporated melodies into, under and above so many of the harsher licks. It sounds almost like Slaughter of the Soul with a softer or Romantic touch, and I don't mean that as any sort of insult, but it's just a bit dreamy and more imaginative, in fact I wouldn't be surprised if some of that imagination was inspired by the earlier, less direct At the Gates albums. At any rate, this is another band that would make a few waves due to its similarities to the favorited trends of its day, nearly poised on a higher level of success.

This EP is a solid start, for sure, if nothing exceptional. They write their hearts out, loading up these tunes with walls of melody, snarling vocals and a half-decent studio sound, but the problem is this material is simply not that catchy. It's the sort of songwriting that sounds like it SHOULD be catchy, but a lot of the riffing patterns are right in one ear, and out the other...maybe a few exceptions, like the track "Dreams Within" which does kind of rock with a few memorable guitars and an atmospheric, acoustic intro, but by the time I do get to that fourth cut out of five, I'd nearly already given up. The closing title track is also one of its better pieces, and I wish that and "Dreams Within" had been in reverse order to kick off the release, I'd have perked up much faster. Otherwise, this is passable, proficient and certainly passionate in its delivery, it just lacks the thorough magic it would need to stand out in this niche. Fortunately, I think it's the worst of In Thy Dreams' recordings, they'd improve a bit, and this isn't even really that bad, I can simply think of 50 or more other releases of this type that I'd never pass on for it.

Verdict: Indifference [6.25/10]

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