Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Review: Lahmia - Forget Every Sunrise (2008)

Lahmia [ MySpace ]
Forget Every Sunrise

Melodic death metal is a genre that is overflowing with bands of all calibers, from the truly innovative to the woefully inadequate. In recent years it has become difficult to find a band in this style that can offer something new or fresh enough to make a positive impact, but Italy's Lahmia may well be one of those outfits that will ignite some interest. Forget Every Sunrise is the Romans' second demo and is, in many ways, very impressive. The artwork and production are both professionally done but, of course, it's the music that makes the band - not the packaging. And in this regard as well, Lahmia is exceptional.

The core of the band's sound is the Gothenburg style of death metal, much in the same vein as bands like In Flames and Children of Bodom. While Lahmia isn't offering anything really groundbreaking on Forget Every Sunrise, neither are they aping the bands who've already found success in the genre. Instead they bring to the table a fresh take on the style, incorporating significant melody and a touch of Gothic atmosphere without relying on keyboards to make it all happen. Instead, guitarists Flavio Gianello and Samuele Piacenti weave together breakneck riffs and thrashy melodies with some pretty somber acoustic leads to create a tight backdrop that exudes an overall feeling of brutal melancholy. The track that best illustrates Lahmia's interpretation of the genre is "Glass Eyed Child", which incorporates a significantly higher dosage of doom elements to give the song something of an early My Dying Bride or Katatonia feel. A distraught solo from Gianello opens the song, which soon expands with some meaty riffs before frontman Francesco Amerise adds his gurgling growl and anguished shrieks to the mix. Amerise tends to stick with a growl throughout most of Forget Every Sunrise, but he does belt out the occasional shriek in very convincing fashion. He also briefly breaks out a rather decent clean vocal style on most of the tracks which adds yet another dimension of Gothic atmosphere. Along with "Glass Eyed Child", "Game Of Sacrifice" stands out as a highlight as Amerise teams up with Gianello and Piacenti to deliver a song that is heavily influenced by more traditional power metal, with some excellent dual-guitar riffs and a very memorable bridge.

As previously mentioned, Forget Every Sunrise does not break any ground but it does prove Lahmia to be a very talented band capable of producing some interesting and enjoyable songs. Their skillful blending of Gothic and power metal elements with a strong melodeath foundation - sans keyboards - is a breath of fresh air the genre certainly needs, so keep an eye out for Lahmia to begin their rise through the death metal ranks.

Track Listing
1 Nightfall 4:40
2 Grinding Dreams 5:29
3 Glass Eyed Child 5:53
4 Game Of Sacrifice 5:19
5 The Last Dance 5:49
Total Runtime 27:10

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