Sunday, July 21, 2024

Insomnium’s Songs of the Dusk: the perfect winter soundscape

As Winter draws closer, Insomnium released their latest EP, Songs of the Dusk, just before their tour of the UK and Europe began. Insomnium are the perfect melodic death metal band for the winter seasons as they balance stark and lonely acoustic soundscapes with intense harmonised guitar work and anthemic drumming. 

This EP feels sonically very similar to Anno 1696 which was released earlier this year. This shouldn’t be surprising considering how close they are in terms of release. Songs of the Dusk has a dark tone but much like dusk itself, it still has elements of light that still remain. 

‘Stained in Red’ has some of the best guitar work the band have ever recorded, the huge bends and melodic leads give the song an almost power metal feel without sacrificing the tone or progressive elements they’ve worked so hard to build. 

The centrepiece of the album is the title track ‘Songs of Dusk,’ a massive 9-minute epic, a slow plodding leviathan of a track that sounds like something Steven Wilson would have written during The Raven That Refused to Sing days. The run time may put some people off but it becomes so easy to get lost in, much like the frozen wastelands it invokes. Niilo Sevänen is one of the most emotive vocalists in extreme metal, his clean vocals convey so much emotion and his growls contrast them with so much power and intensity. 

Insomnium’s greatest skill is creating atmosphere, every track on this EP invokes this visceral cold and vividly conjures images of Scandinavian tundra. There are few bands that can inspire such imagery from just a few instruments as well as being able to properly develop their sound into something that regularly tops year end lists. It’s an impressive skill to create something that makes it feel like winter and Insomnium stand amongst the titans of extreme metal in that regard. 

Songs of Dusk is available November 3rd via Century Media. 

Lamestream Lydia
Lamestream Lydia
Self-proclaimed journalist, Progressive rock enthusiast and the most American sounding person you're ever likely to meet in the North of England

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