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Insomnium: In the Halls of Awaiting

I'll admit I'm not much of a death-metal fan. Growling vocals? Who needs 'em - especially when there are so many other bands making worthwhile and intelligible statements? Besides, most growlers are pissed off anyway. Take singer/bassist Nilo Sevšnen of the Finnish quartet Insomnium. He's gotta be one angry dude, but his angst is tempered by complex, and I daresay, classically orchestrated arrangements that aren't afraid to incorporate acoustic interludes or overwhelming melodies.

The band's name comes from the Latin word for nightmare and insomnia, and In the Halls of Awaiting boasts unintelligble lyrics influenced by old Finnish poetry. The music on the debut album is furious yet melancholic, violent yet soothing, dreary yet wistful. Perhaps it's the progressive overtones that pervade the album, or maybe it's the way guitarists Ville Friman and Ville Všnni along with drummer Markus Hirvonen play the hell out their instruments while still managing to sound classy, or it could even be the subtle manner in which Insomnium treats listeners to 55 minutes of brutal and beautiful music. Whatever it is, these guys are the real deal and deserve your attention more than scores of other (face)paint-by-numbers death metal bands. May they keep you awake tonight …

Added: August 26th 2002
Reviewer: Michael Popke
Related Link: Official Insomnium Web Site
Hits: 4598
Language: english

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