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Remina - Strata review



Reviewer:
7.9

44 users:
7.64
Band: Remina
Album: Strata
Release date: November 2022


01. Aeon Rains
02. Obsidian
03. Dying Sun
04. Icarus Signal
05. The Endless City
06. Ilos
07. Back In Time


Strata is the debut release by newly formed New Zealand-based doom metal act Remina, featuring no other than the queen of gothic doom herself, Heike Langhans, former vocalist of the mighty Draconian. Working alongside the beautiful, ghostly presence of Heike is the talented multi-instrumentalist Mike Lamb of atmospheric black metal band Sojourner. I must say, it already sounds very appealing with this duo pulling the strings; a band with huge potential, perhaps?

Appropriately described as atmospheric doom, Remina creates an all-impressive and immersive cosmic, dreamy backdrop, whilst also bringing gothic, and even some darkwave elements to the table. Heike's vocal performance is certainly well worth taking note of; it's stunningly powerful, is as hypnotic and angelic as ever. Just as you'd expect from a post-Draconian album, Heike's lyrics are both profound and poetic, but being the talented lyricist she is, there is also a focus on various sci-fi inspirations which are centred around the whole cosmic theme and atmospheric setting of the album. Now, there's also no denying the fact that Mike Lamb's instrumental work, and use of synthesisers, hold the key to creating that spacey atmospheric soundscape so efficiently.

However, unlike Draconian and the like, you can plainly see this band have developed a style which uses far less emphasis on the heavier approach to doom, meaning less of those crushing, memorable riffs, and less heavily distorted guitar driven sounds, rather opting for a soft, spacey atmospheric setting, in which you as the listener can deeply immerse yourself in. A prime example of this is the closing track "Back In Time", which is primarily a synth-based track with hardly any instrumental work at all until near the end. "Icarus Signal" is most likely the heaviest track on the album, with "Dying Sun" not being far behind, this due to the synths being held back that little bit more, allowing the riffs to shine through. So, a slightly heavier sound seems to be present on those particular tracks, but it's the track "The Endless City" which I find most appealing, with its emotive songwriting and epic structural arrangements.

The album follows a relatively simple structure, relying heavily on the synths to provide much of the album's emotion. There’s also a gentle, calming flow from beginning to end, with no actual headbanging moments to speak of, and no harsh vocals present, as Heike's wonderfully performed, and unique vocal style carries on through the album. All of this can be a joy to follow for the listener, that is depending on the listener's particular mood and tolerance level at the time, because like I said, this isn't regular doom as you know, it generally needs time to sink in, and hopefully learn to fully appreciate.

To some, this style may at first seem a bit of a miss. You might not take an instant liking to this approach straight away, and unsurprisingly so; I mean, at the end of the day this is far from your typical death/doom, gothic doom or even any kind of traditional doom for that matter. Sure, the guitars may sound thin, and the programmed drumming may obviously lack that overall punch, but if you just take a step back and listen you might actually be pleasantly surprised by what you hear.


Rating breakdown
Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 8
Production: 8





Written on 18.11.2022 by And well there you have it.


Comments

Comments: 13   Visited by: 74 users
20.11.2022 - 00:34
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
Good job man


I have thoughts are those 2 a couple now?
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Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
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20.11.2022 - 08:12
Rating: 8
AndyMetalFreak
A Nice Guy
Written by Bad English on 20.11.2022 at 00:34

Good job man


I have thoughts are those 2 a couple now?

Thanks As far as I know they aren't a couple.
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20.11.2022 - 11:40
Nejde
Philosoraptor
Very nice review but you forgot to mention Light Field Reverie because this is more or less a follow up to Another World which also is a great album. I don't really see why they needed to start a new band when it's more of the same atmospheric doom with marginal differences. Line-up vice it's just Scotty Lodge (Sojourner bassist) that's missing.This could might as well have been Light Field Reverie - Strata. Great album either way.
----
"You have the right to believe in what you want. I have the right to believe it's ridiculous." - Ricky Gervais
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20.11.2022 - 12:49
Rating: 8
AndyMetalFreak
A Nice Guy
Written by Nejde on 20.11.2022 at 11:40

Very nice review but you forgot to mention Light Field Reverie because this is more or less a follow up to Another World which also is a great album. I don't really see why they needed to start a new band when it's more of the same atmospheric doom with marginal differences. Line-up vice it's just Scotty Lodge (Sojourner bassist) that's missing.This could might as well have been Light Field Reverie - Strata. Great album either way.

That's true your quite right about that, this album could very well have been a follow up to Light Field Reverie's to Another World. I'm going to be kicking myself for not mentioning that
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20.11.2022 - 15:53
Rating: 8
ScreamingSteelUS
Editor-in-Chief
I'll have to revisit that Light Field Reverie album, because I remember liking it, and I'm getting such Trees Of Eternity vibes (and a bit of King Woman) from this album that I feel in need of some more melancholy atmospheric doom.
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"Earth is small and I hate it" - Lum Invader

I'm the Agent of Steel.
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20.11.2022 - 20:45
Nejde
Philosoraptor
Written by AndyMetalFreak on 20.11.2022 at 12:49

That's true your quite right about that, this album could very well have been a follow up to Light Field Reverie's to Another World. I'm going to be kicking myself for not mentioning that


No need to do that. With musicians being in myriads of projects these days it's impossible to keep track of everything they do. I only connected the dots when you mentioned Mike Lamb and Heike Langhans and I thought "wait a minute, this sounds familiar"
----
"You have the right to believe in what you want. I have the right to believe it's ridiculous." - Ricky Gervais
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21.11.2022 - 21:18
DarkWingedSoul

Light Field Reverie was one of my favs of that year, and was looking forward to this one, even more after i heard Heike left Draconian. After the first couple of listens i dont feel it close to Another World, but for sure i will come back to this album soon enough. Good review !
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21.11.2022 - 21:43
Rating: 8
AndyMetalFreak
A Nice Guy
Written by DarkWingedSoul on 21.11.2022 at 21:18

Light Field Reverie was one of my favs of that year, and was looking forward to this one, even more after i heard Heike left Draconian. After the first couple of listens i dont feel it close to Another World, but for sure i will come back to this album soon enough. Good review !

Thanks I agree that this album isn't quite on the same level as Another World, even though it's still a very impressive effort. Heike's vocals are really something quite special.
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22.11.2022 - 08:02
DarkWingedSoul

Oh yes Heike's vocals are amazing, can always bring me back to life, or just usher me into that wonderful other world...check out her other projects, all are wonderful, Lor3l3i, ISON....
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22.11.2022 - 08:04
DarkWingedSoul

Oh and the cover here just calls for those 2 kings from the Havukruunu album cover... which reminded me i should re-listen that album, and its running for the 5x time already....
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26.11.2022 - 21:01
kingeryck

Written by Nejde on 20.11.2022 at 20:45

Written by AndyMetalFreak on 20.11.2022 at 12:49

That's true your quite right about that, this album could very well have been a follow up to Light Field Reverie's to Another World. I'm going to be kicking myself for not mentioning that


No need to do that. With musicians being in myriads of projects these days it's impossible to keep track of everything they do. I only connected the dots when you mentioned Mike Lamb and Heike Langhans and I thought "wait a minute, this sounds familiar"



I feel like Draconian's last album had a bit of a Trees of Eternity influence, but I asked Anders on FB if they were an influence and he said he didn't think so but.. it sure sounds like it to me.
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30.11.2022 - 00:42
Thanks for the great review AndyMetalFreak! We both really appreciate it!

Written by Bad English on 20.11.2022 at 00:34

Good job man


I have thoughts are those 2 a couple now?


Yeah we are, we've been engaged since earlier this year and we've been together since early 2020.

Written by Nejde on 20.11.2022 at 11:40

Very nice review but you forgot to mention Light Field Reverie because this is more or less a follow up to Another World which also is a great album. I don't really see why they needed to start a new band when it's more of the same atmospheric doom with marginal differences. Line-up vice it's just Scotty Lodge (Sojourner bassist) that's missing.This could might as well have been Light Field Reverie - Strata. Great album either way.


Haha yeah, that's a very fair call, but it made a bit more sense than it seemed from this side. With LFR it seemed some people seemed to really like half the songs, and some people seemed to really like the other half...but the weird hard cut between half being pretty doomy and half being more modern/gothy seemed to be a bit chalk and cheese for some people (which we totally get). So Remina is all the doomy, spacey, darker stuff that we both love to do focused into one more cohesive project (and like Andy pointed out in the review, Strata was sort of 'doom lite' on purpose, we were going for a cloudy atmospheric thing, but in future it'll probably weave between this and something a bit heavier and more doom as well). With LFR, we're going to take it more in the direction of the title track on Another World, with that sort of The Birthday Massacre/Drab Majesty/Unto Others/Vandal Moon thing. Both bands will just have their own identities a little more, I guess.

tl;dr: From now on Remina = Doom / LFR = Gothy Post-Punk thing. It'll probably make more sense.

And regardless, we're uploading everything to one channel on YouTube so that if people want to check any of it out they're not having to go to three different places anymore (it's just YT @ghost.bird.studios, I didn't want to link it because I have no idea what the external links rules are here).

Thanks for the Another World love in here! It's cool to see that some people enjoy it so much!
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30.11.2022 - 10:12
Rating: 8
AndyMetalFreak
A Nice Guy
Written by sojournermike on 30.11.2022 at 00:42

Thanks for the great review AndyMetalFreak! We both really appreciate it!

Your very welcome and thanks for getting in touch, and congratulations on your engagement by the way
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