Lately for me, nothing exceptional has come out of Finland in quite a few years. It still pretty much remains that way. This band Bleakwail comes from the same country. To be honest, after seeing pictures of these guys, I was on the floor laughing myself to death. Dressed as monks with crosses on the face was just too much for me to handle. And the drummer looked like a dead Charlie Chaplain. So from seeing their pictures, I could not take this band seriously. I had read where people thought they were good and I just decided to check it out.
The disk starts off kinda cool. "A Bleak Wail" is quite unique for an intro part of a song that makes a good intro to an outing. I liked the intro. Once the passage where the vocals start, the music commences to sound like a
cartoon. The vocals are out of key even. As the song goes, it just falls
apart. The 2nd song is called "Veni Sancte Spiritus". This seems better.
Deeper vocals to make it more haunting. When the vocals kick in, they keep your interest going. When it mellows, it sounds like they are trying to make a choir and that don't work. But they get right back into the good stuff. It goes in and out from cool harsh stuff, to lame slower stuff. They just need to stick with fast stuff. I do like this song though.
"Songs of Sorrow" follows at track 3. This starts good! Very good. Harsh, slight grim feel, but not extremely fast. But again this is a song in and out from cool part to dumb cartoon pieces. The vocals are killer though!
Towards the middle, they bring out this monk type thing with actual
singing. This is brilliant. Acoustic/clean guitar underlying! Not exactly what makes this band a black metal band but they did a good job.
Song 4 is called "Passionate Peace". I hate the way this starts! I have no clue what they were trying to do and I don't think they do either. Clean guitars, keyboards...It has melody but it's just not good. They bust into faster stuff and the vocals kinda get harsher. Reminds me of Vondur in
the vocal department. The keyboards are way too loud and overpower the good fast parts. Actually they are way too loud in the entire song.
The final track on here is called "Liberation From Death". Now although the title has kind of a cool ring, they definitely end this song with a bang. Faster and harsher than the others on here. The vocals are even kept up. I am actually impressed with the fast and harsher parts. But again, that cartoon music just completely ruins the mood.
Overall, this isn't a bad effort, but it's not a great one either. There are great parts and there are crap parts. Now if they just take their stupid wannabe paint off and rid theirselves of the cartoon music, this would be a band to check more of. (Review by Biff Bartholemew)