KAUNIS KUOLEMATON – Syttyköön Toinen Aurinko

Rating: 4/5
Distributor/label: https://www.facebook.com/nobledemonrecords/
Released: 2020
Buy Album: https://kauniskuolematon.bandcamp.com/album/syttyk-n-toinen-aurinko
Band Website: https://www.facebook.com/KaunisKuolematon

Band line-up:

Olli Suvanto – Vocals
Mikko Heikkilä – Clean vocals, Rhythm guitar
Ville Mussalo – Guitars
Jarno Uski – Bass
Miika Hostikka – Drums

Tracklisting:

1. Sub Idem Tempus
2. Syttyköön Toinen Aurinko (Let A New Sun Ignite)
3. Hautajaiset (Funeral)
4. Mustavalkoinen (Monochrome)
5. Kylmä Maa (Frozen Ground)
6. Kuolevan Surun Alla (Under The Grief Of The Dying)
7. Paha Ihminen (A Bad Person)
8. Särkynyt (Broken)
9. Hyvästi (Goodbye)

Review:

Kaunis Kuolematon are a Finnish melodic doom band on Noble Demon Records, who formed in 2012. Their sound features beautiful melodic soundscapes, soft vocals, an extreme metal drive and violent screams. They will be releasing their third LP ‘Syttykoon Toinen Aurinko’ on 27th November and it was recorded at DeepNoise Studios, Finland. Because of their brutal and distinctive style, they have shared the stage with Omnium Gatherum, Cult of Luna and others, and have played festivals all over their home country. 

This music sure is ambitious with its heavy metal meets symphonic style. Not only is the instrumentation rich, the songs develop expertly, just as progressive music would. Furthermore, the lead guitar parts are often flashy yet doomy, too, making this stuff a little different to what some fans of similar genre fusions may be used to. Bands such as Rhapsody tend to be more upbeat, but of course there are exceptions. For better or for worse, the vocals are often very shouty here. Arguably melodic vocals are more desirable in this case, as whilst the orchestral parts are full of colour, they’re not exactly epic film music level in terms of complexity, rather they are more designed to create melancholic and dramatic atmospheres often without being truly detailed. Therefore, the music really needs something more deep to make it shine, at times. Especially when it’s realised most of the tracks are in similar tones.

The vocal melodies on track 4 are more interesting and extensive than the ones heard previously, but after a couple of minutes, those not exactly musical screams come back with avengeance. The vocal melodies do soon arrive again and you could say they are things to look forward to; music doesn’t have to be completely gripping 100% of the time and there is nothing wrong with highs, relatively simple releases of tension and then build-ups. Sadly, the 5th track’s clean vocals from the frontman are too infrequent to be called highlights and they merely add spooky textures. Track 6 is better. Track 7 does have some more rather elongated vocal lines with some tasty notes and the delivery builds with passion. Then the band all come in forcefully at once. In an intriguing change of direction, some proggy synth parts quickly arrive, as do some equally styled guitar leads after them. It’s a little weird the way they come and go so soon, but fortunately they do get developed a bit later on. Tracks 8 and 9 are pretty cool, too. I hate to be repetitive, but they have some nice clean vocals. 

In conclusion, this music does have a lot to it, but many symphonic metal fans will be wanting more melodies, especially from the vocalist. (Is that clear, now?) Not a ton more, just more. On the other hand, the death metal audience will most likely perceive there to be no problems with the delivery at all. However, this stuff is far from evil sounding and masterful band ‘Septic Flesh’ level. Compared to them, KK are quite bland in all areas, though there is nothing wrong with a more laid back and stripped down style, just as there is nothing wrong with minimalist material if the ideas are strong. There are many intriguing concepts in this release, though there are many average ones. I don’t speak the language, but the album’s instrumentation seems to tell a story, so if you’re looking for a saga, this may be for you. However, they’re not the more accessible Rhapsody level, either. 

Review by Simon Wiedemann
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