we open the album with an "intro" and close with an "outro" - a little clichéd but the intro is played very well - there aren't many clues here as what to expect from the rest of this release ! its a little symphonic and has a 'flight of the bumblebee' piano trill; the synth sounds are nice (not stark or hollow).
"in the hands of the forest" follows, part of the "intro" continues until the guitar thunders through - but the guitar does get a little swamped when the vocal starts and the synths become the main feature. the song has a nice tempo and the vocal isn't quite as strong as it could be and perhaps it could of come up a little in the mix.
"one strange dream" starts off reminding me of a few other songs then finds its own way, which is a good thing. the vocal is slightly different, a lower growl than the previous track at first but both 'styles' are a bit stronger for this track. there is some impressive drum work but the cymbals are weak in places.
the fourth track "where the fear conquers all" starts off slow before the guitar comes in and this time some of the 'synth' takes a back seat to the guitar riff - there is some solid guitar work and the 'synth' flows nicely around it making this one of the stronger songs on the release but it ends too soon and in a weird, slightly unsatisfying way.
i don't know if its such a good idea to call a song the same as the band name, perhaps this will start a new trend. "ghoul chapel" is the longest track on the release. there is some more strong synth and guitar work and the vocal is also stronger in this track - there are some good tempo changes; this song has some interesting riffs which stand out for me.
the vocal comes very quickly in "the funeral of a horrid man" as though it is in a rush. overall this song is a little mishmashed almost as though there were too many ideas and they haven't quite gelled together.
"lost in the walls" is almost the closing track; it has a really good tempo, a bassline you can just about hear and the synth and guitar work well together. i don't like the vocal for this track. i feel that a strong vocal would of been better than a weakish vocal with effects. its ends way too abruptly (perhaps i would have taken the ending up an octave and faded it out rather than stopping and leaving us in the rain).
the little "outro" closes this release - its short, sparse and doesn't have much to it but it has been played well - a nice closer.
overall this is a good release and is almost a great release. its all been well played and is pretty well mixed - it can be quite a central mix in most places. i like the attention to the drumming with good use of rolls and fills and for the most part good drum/cymbal tones. the guitar work can get a little lost in places but this is more than likely intentional; the guitar has a nice tonality and there are some really great riffs. a good synth soundbank has been used and much of the synth work is amazing. the vocals can be a little weak in places but they are still good - sometimes you just need that extra GRRR !!!
there can be a slight 'problem' with the endings of these songs - they can be a little abrupt - this is sometimes good and sometimes bad. i know not every song should 'fade out' but i don't like feeling like the song could have continued and ended well instead of just ok. i can't help but think if you slowed these tracks way down you'd get some really interesting doom songs. the artwork is ok as far as artwork goes - its been well done but needs a bit more to be a 'nightmarish illusion''. overall this is a good release and i liked it!
Source - Funereal Drone