Insomnius Dei
Illusions of Silence

After a fairly disappointing year in metal in my opinion, I have been anxiously awaiting something fresh and exciting. If I only heard this CD earlier, it would have surely made it into my top ten of the year. Australia’s Insomnius Dei, are flat out miserable bastards, I love it.

Mark Kelson is the mastermind behind this sorrowful project and he is also the leader of Australia’s premier goth/doomsters, The Eternal. Mark handles vocal, guitar, and drum duties on this record along side Terry Vainoras who plays bass and helps with vocals. The sound created by these two men rivals Swallow the Sun in my opinion. Seriously, right from the first track “For the Memories of My Past,” Insomnius Dei formulate thick harmonies and one hell of an atmosphere. The trade off of clean vocals and growls are executed perfectly. Complete anguish and hopelessness furnish the soft sung utterance and the growls are very strong and violent.

One major aspect of this debut is just how ambient the majority of the CD is. It’s a good ambience too. Most of the breaks will travel into one and two-minute compositions, which emphasize the chords and harmonies that had lead up that point. That is great songwriting that keeps you in the song no matter how long it lasts. Dreary passages like this will make for a great drive on a rainy or snow covered winter day. All this is just within the first track but continues throughout the CD. As beautifully bleak as all this is, track two displays just how rooted in death metal the guitar work is. Very gritty and almost old Obituary sounding, these simple yet affecting riffs create a nice varying sound. A lot of guitar effects are used to create the dark landscape. Delayed harmonies and minimal keyboard use is evident.

The songs travel slow and force an utterly heartbreaking feeling. The power and depression is just as uplifting as it is discouraging and that is what makes a great doom record. It holds a lot in common with the style of Swallow the Sun, Novembers Doom, and early 90’s doom, yet the craft is verging on something of their own. I am even more thrilled about this release just because of the potential shown for further progress.

For a debut this is monumental in my opinion. Out of all genre’s offered in metal today, when doom is done right, it is powerful shit. Thank you Insomnius Dei for displaying one promising project for the future and one enjoyable modern death/doom release. Fans of the genre, this is a must have.

By Shane Wolfensberger

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Shane Wolfensberger
January 15th, 2008

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