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Lucidity: The Oblivion Circle

Tapping into the Finnish predilection for melancholy, Lucidity offer up a debut of progressive doom which provides everything that description suggests, and a whole lot more. For a first album, recorded pretty much under their own steam and where they co-produced and mixed, The Oblivion Circle comes across as remarkably accomplished. Yes there's a reliance on the likes of Insomnium for inspiration and the spectre of Opeth isn't a million miles out of earshot, yet Lucidity don't sound like mere clones and they also have a keen eye for arrangements. The mainman of the band is Martti Pohjosaho, who takes the strongest hand in writing the music, as well as playing guitars and singing. He also provides keyboards and while his credit for that is hidden below the main band member list, there's no escaping that it his skills in this direction which set Lucidity apart from many of the bands falling into the morass of those using a similar template. Vocally he's also found to be a talent (did I mention he also designed that cover and booklet??), a low register that reminds of a sullen Khan, ex-of Kamelot, proving extremely effective, while his rasping bark and growls impress also. However across the brooding melody of "World's Within The World" and more brutal "Conjuring Veil", where the most overt Opethisms are revealed, his band mates Jari Kinnunen (guitars), Sam Ahmaoja (bass) and Pekka Parantainen (drums) prove equal to the task. A variety of attacks are employed from song to song, yet for a collection built on grinding riffs and thundering bass, there's a lot more subtlety employed than you might anticipate, with the likes of "Death Is A Gate" coming to life gradually as a slow build of force, rather than a thundering fist of anger. Don't get me wrong, anger is an emotion that this album is no stranger to, but there's a more despairing side injected through the clever use of keyboards, with tracks such as "Closer The Vision" benefiting from an ever changing vocal assault which highlights the many strengths of Pohjosaho's approach.

It is too early to suggest (even though they've taken since 2004 to get to this stage) that Lucidity are ready to challenge the big boys of what has becomes an ever busying end of the musical market. However there's definitely more here than many debut albums offer and more than many bands in this sphere every really achieve. If there's one thing Lucidity look capable of avoiding, it is The Oblivion Circle.

Track Listing
1.The Process to born again
2.Conjuring Veil
3.Death Is A Gate
4.Closer The Vision
5.Appearing As A Dream
6.Worlds Within The World

Added: June 29th 2015
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Lucidity online
Hits: 1730
Language: english

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