Words of Farewell – Immersion (AFM Records)

Monday, 25th March 2013
Rating: 7.5/10

Melodic death metal is such a generational thing now that fourth or fifth generation bands (we think) are copping the sounds of first generation bands in their twilight years. Or, they’re looking to bands who broke at the dawn of the 00’s. Apparently, it’s no longer totally en vogue to pick from the carcass of Slaughter of the Soul and The Gallery – one can now visit the modern-day works of Dark Tranquillity, Soilwork and In Flames for some guidance, which is what Germany’s Words of Farewell did on their Immersiondebut. At least they left the clean vocals on the cutting room floor.

The fact that these gents are a six-piece means that there will be plenty of keyboard action, and there is. However, it’s not the wishy-washy type of snyths that Soilwork or DT employs; rather they’re more along the lines of Hypocrisy, a band with relatively close ties to melodic death metal, but aren’t melodic enough to warrant the tag. The band finds the right spots for subtle atmospheric interludes, like on opener “Project: Daybreak” and album interlude “Auriga,” two spots that provide a reprieve from the melody-fest that carries across the album’s ten cuts.

As Immersions unfolds (or one gets “immersed” in the album), shards of sorely-missed and underrated Mors Principium Est become evident. Words of Farewell can’t hang with the Finns on a technical level, but the spunkiness in the riffs (see: “End of Transmission” and “Sorae”) and weighty arrangements certainly bring to mind their Finnish counterparts. Frankly, Words of Farewell could have done a lot worse in the melodic death metal aping department.

About as well-executed of a debut as one can get in the melodic death metal field, Immersion shows that Words of Farewell have at least, a tenuous grasp on being multi-faceted. Hopefully, this will serve them well down the road. Not sure if anyone’s ears can take another sonic beating of recycled Gothenburg riffs…

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(This content originally appeared on Blistering.com)

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