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Soijl - Endless Elysian Fields review

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Band: Soijl
Album: Endless Elysian Fields
Release date: September 2015

01. Endless Elysian Fields
02. Dying Kinship
03. Swan Song
04. The Formation Of A Black Nightsky
05. Drifter, Trickster
06. The Cosmic Cold
07. The Shattering

Soijl are a one man (kind of) death doom project of Mattias Svensson, whom you might know from a stint with Saturnus. After six years as a side project, recruiting Henrik Kindvall to growl, rasp and bellow, and some positive response to demos, he got in gear and set out to record Endless Elysian Fields.

With Endless Elysian Fields they attempted to force themselves into the minds of the suicidal and write from the point of view of the bleakest, darkest moments. Total despair. Fear. Misery. Woe. Gastric discomfort after eating an absurdly spicy meal. Distraught fragility. <Insert more terms I've used in prior doom reviews here.>

They do the job well enough. Or miserably enough.

Svensson does solid work on the instrumentation and song-writing. Your requisite elements of extreme doom are all in place. Chugging. Power chords. Harmonic squeals to accent riffs. I did rather enjoy his mournful harmonies, they did help the album connect with me on an emotional level.

Kindvall's vocals are spot on as well. He growls well, while enunciating. The rasps are an enjoyable counterpoint.

The sound is also pretty solid, pretty much what you'd expect from the bulk of Solitude Productions doom acts.

Basically it's a solid death doom album. The oddity of it and perhaps the reason my score reads a shade higher than the words do is because of the track order. The album, nine songs all between the seven and ten-minute mark, is decent, slightly above average and cruises along. It's OK. I don't mind listening to it, but neither was I pumped to spin it again

Then it closes out with what I thought were the two best tracks, "The Cosmic Cold" and "The Shattering." They pick up the pace a tad, have some spoken/clean sung bits and just hit harder physically and emotionally than the seven preceding tracks. Seems so odd as so many bands frontload an album with the best songs right out of the gate.

I guess this approach worked as each and every time I made my way through the album, my overall opinion and impression improved as it closed out. Probably bumped the score a half point.

So if you dig some of the Solitude Productions death doom albums I have reviewed in the past, this one is worth checking out. And you can do so here.

Rating breakdown
Performance: 7
Songwriting: 7
Originality: 6
Production: 9

Written on 15.12.2015 by BitterCOld has been officially reviewing albums for MetalStorm since 2009.

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