Lorelei – Ugrjumye Volny Studenogo Morja (Угрюмые волны студёного моря)

Lorelei‘s long-distance debut comes at a time of great ferment in the Russian gothic death doom scene. One risks being repetitive in stating that the releases offered by Solitude and BadMoodMan have now reached a level of quality that constitutes a true trademark. After the splendid works of Revelations Of Rain and Shallow Rivers, Ugrjumye Volny Studenogo Morja shifts the musical coordinates toward a gothic with dramatic overtones, emphasized by the usual dichotomy between lyrical vocals and male growl. When both components are excellently executed as in this case and the whole thing fits into a refined and intense musical context such as that put forth by Lorelei, any consideration of the predictability of such a record becomes frankly superfluous. The three quarters of an hour of this work, which the Moscow band dedicates to the Renaissance, with particular references to the poetics of Petrarch (as at least we Italians have a chance to understand from the frequent inclusion of verses recited in our language) represent something more than an ideal “bignami” of gothic death doom: this is achieved through songs that ooze romance from every note, enhanced by an instrumental performance that is as restrained as it is emotional, by the impeccable lyrical intonation exhibited by Ksenia Mikaylova and by the mighty growl of E.S., (already known in the scene as the soul and voice of Who Dies In Siberian Slush). The record does not reach epochal heights precisely because, in its songwriting, there is that hint of self-referentiality resulting from the close ties that unite most of the doom bands from the Moscow area, an aspect that inevitably tends to make the stylistic traits rather homogeneous, as well as the sounds at the production level. But beyond this and the fact that the use of the Russian idiom, even here, as in the case of Revelations Of Rain, ends up precluding this product a greater diffusion, one cannot help but appreciate tracks, imbued with a pathos worthy of the poems of the Florentine poet, such as the magnificent Ten’ju Bezlikoj… and Ne Vedaja Temnyh Predelov Pechali…, episodes that stand out within an overall context however of absolute value. An excellent debut, then, for the Lorelei who, in the near future, may also find greater exposure if they too opt to adopt English-language texts.

2013 – BadMoodMan