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Unkind: Pelon Juuret

The last track on this album is a melodic instrumental featuring a banjo. I can't stop listening to it. The banjo, as everyone knows, has a distinctive sound—a kind of staccato plunking thing—that listeners often associate with Bluegrass and Country. With this track, entitled "Saattokoti," the banjo leads the way, playing arpeggios at a slow tempo, establishing a melancholy, yet slightly upbeat, mood. Behind the banjo, tones from a synthesizer keep things rooted in the main chords. The song is repetitive and simple in its structure, but its general flavor shows a side to Unkind that attracted my attention. No, I don't need them to mellow out, but I do appreciate the effort to explore these quieter dimensions. This song is awesome and is easily the best one on the album.

The rest of the album is very dark and aggressive, a tribute to high quality music in the hardcore and crust traditions. I preferred the times the music rang out, holding on to certain notes and sounds just long enough to leave an impression. With music like this, I find that the vocals and instruments are often at cross purposes, mostly because the harsh vocals crowd out much of the sound. This is often true on this release, but the band is careful to let their better compositions come through effectively. Besides the amazing closing track, I really enjoyed "Valtakunta," mostly because it balances the vocals and the instrumental passages the best. Its minimalistic and melodic main theme stuck with me for a while. The other tracks are less atmospheric and more aggressive. I preferred the forays into atmosphere, but I have to admit that songs like "Laki" and the title track were pretty great instances of hardcore at its best. Still, this band should definitely see where else they can go with their melodic instincts.

This is a good album, one that should make a pretty strong impression on lots of people. Some readers may not enjoy the instrumental track as much as I did; after all, Unkind is really an aggressive band, the kind people listen to when they want to jump around and go crazy. Still, there's something else going on here than sheer aggressiveness. If for no other reason, check out what these guys can do with the banjo.

Track Listing:
1. Pelon Juuret
2. Vihan Lapset
3. Valtakunta
4. Viallinen
5. Laki
6. Olemisen Pelko
7. Saattokoti

Added: July 9th 2013
Reviewer: Carl Sederholm
Related Link: Band Facebook Page
Hits: 1620
Language: english

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