Norther
Death Unlimited


3.0
good

Review

by OllieS USER (19 Reviews)
September 21st, 2008 | 15 replies


Release Date: 2004 | Tracklist


Death Unlimited is Finnish Melodic Death Metal band Norther’s third album, released in 2004. Their first two albums, Dreams Of Endless War and Mirror Of Madness displayed a furious, melodic and at times Power Metal influenced style of Melodic Death Metal, much like Finnish counterparts Children Of Bodom. Their first two albums were good, but if Norther really were to shed their ‘CoB clone’ image and progress musically, they’d really have to change things up on this album. Fortunately, they did, as Death Unlimited breaks the former Norther formula and displays a new sound for the band.

If you’ve heard the first two Norther albums and someone mentions the band, you’ll probably instantly think of the guitarists and their proficient guitar work. But I doubt you’ll be thinking of them like that after you’ve heard this album. The constant onslaught of riffs and leads found on Dreams... and Mirror isn't so frequent here. Instead, for a large part of the album, it’s the bass which gets the spotlight: throughout the album the bass is very audible and is given prominent roles in every track, similar to Steve Harris of Iron Maiden. This gives a welcome change to Norther’s sound, but most of the basslines aren’t incredibly interesting and at times it feels like Norther are trying too hard to change their sound with it. This is still a Metal album though, and the guitarists do exist. The guitar work is toned down a lot: rhythm guitar is pretty much non-existent throughout half of the album (ie in verses of songs it’ll just be drums, bass, keyboard and vocals), which makes the album unnecessarily much less heavy. The bass sometimes adopts a rhythm guitar role, but the riffs generally sound better when the actual rhythm guitarist is playing them. The lead guitar is still good: the solos are a bit slower than previous works but are played with more feeling and are generally composed better. My one complaint here is some longer songs (‘Nothing’, ‘Vain’) lack solos, but for the most part the lead work is consistent. Also, interestingly enough, most solos consist of just one lead guitar with no riff backing it, and others having both guitarists playing lead.

Naturally, due to the lack of guitars the keyboard gets more time to shine. In most places this is good, as during many verses the guitars take a backseat while there’s an up-front keyboard melody (think of Kalmah), which works effectively and is a nice change in Norther’s overall sound. In some places the keyboards don’t work though, these being the ambient parts throughout the album. Basically, there are songs (‘Nightfall’, the albums un-needed intro, and ‘Beneath’, a pointless interlude) and outro sections of some songs (‘A Fallen Star’, ‘The Cure’), that merely consist of synths playing some ambient-like stuff, which is totally boring and temporarily kills the Metal feel of the album. There are also a few keyboard solos on here, which are okay, but the guitar solos in this band are obviously superior.

The vocals on Death Unlimited are hit and miss. Petri Lindroos’ harsh vocals sound brutal and consistent, although they do sound very, very much like Alexi Laiho (may bother some). Kristian Ranta makes his vocal debut on the album, and if I’m honest, his clean vocals are poor. See the chorus to ‘A Fallen Star’ – they sound weak and almost cheesy. Fear not though, they're only used in two - three songs, and don't get a very prominent role in each. The choruses on this album are better than those found on previous albums, as Norther added those gang shouts that you probably know from CoB to a few choruses, and they work very well, making some choruses considerably catchy and memorable.

So that’s all there is to Death Unlimited. The more intense tracks, where there are good, fast riffs, no silly ambient sections and memorable choruses like ‘Deep Inside’ and the title track are top quality stuff, while songs like ‘Vain’ with its lack of main flow and ‘Nothing’ with its recycled riffs are just plain bad. Still, I give Norther credit for changing their sound so much, and the good stuff on this album is really good, so this album gets a 3.5.

Recommended Tracks:

Deep Inside
Death Unlimited
Day Of Redemption



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user ratings (144)
Chart.
3.7
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Comments:Add a Comment 
Yazz_Flute
September 21st 2008


18852 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Nice review. I find Norther to benothing special other than their first two albums, however. But the title track on this is phenomenal and singlehandedly keeps this from being a 3. Rest is decent, but not too memorable.

Digging: Kenn Nardi - Dancing With the Past

BallsToTheWall
September 21st 2008


44800 Comments


I've always found these guys more tolerable then COB. N was pretty good, i'll check this and Mirrors.

Digging: Pink Turns Blue - If Two Worlds Kiss

Yazz_Flute
September 21st 2008


18852 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

N is easily their worst album tbh, a couple good tracks but it was ultimately forgettable. I would rank their albums like this:

Dreams of Endless War>Mirror of Madness>>Till Death Unites Us>>Death Unlimited>>>N

BallsToTheWall
September 21st 2008


44800 Comments


In that case i'll get Mirrors and Dreams. I can't wait for the enw Skyfire album though. Should be gold.

ikarus
September 21st 2008


568 Comments


Review could of been a little longer but still good nonetheless.

the title track is pretty sick and Nothing is a solemn song, obnoxious solos would kind of go against the theme of the song tbh.

As a whole though i like Till Death Unites Us more than this though

beans
September 21st 2008


2332 Comments


i hate how this band is registered under power metalThis Message Edited On 09.21.08

Wizard
September 21st 2008


19612 Comments


these being the retarded ambient parts throughout the album.

no retarded ambient sections and memorable choruses like ‘Deep Inside’ and the title track are top quality stuff,


I think you can find better adjectives here !

Even though you state you reasoning for a 3.5 in your conclusion, I feel this reads like a 2.5 tbqh (3 if your feeling generous). At least I know what this album sounds like and your review did a good job of telling me that. Have a vote for effort.



Digging: Hans Zimmer - Interstellar

OllieS
September 21st 2008


2036 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

^ Yeah, the 'retarded' was a bit silly, I must say. Thanks for the feedback.

Wizard
September 21st 2008


19612 Comments


No prob dude. Always trying to help with a smile .........and a laugh hahahaha!

Satana
November 23rd 2008


204 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

great review man i really like this album! not as good as the first 2 though

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
December 21st 2008


8387 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great album. May not be so good as Dreams of endless war but still pretty amazing. "Deep Inside", "Death Unlimited" and "Nothing" are really really greatThis Message Edited On 12.21.08

growabeardallover
May 21st 2009


18 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

it's one tastey album thats for sure, XD.

JizzInMyPants
May 23rd 2009


2377 Comments


ok i just heard the title track and the ending climax made me fuckign shat bricks.....hmmmm i havent heard older children of bodom (or any bodom for that matter) looks like i need to dig in to that this shit

Giblover
November 3rd 2009


35 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Jizzinmypants take this CD as if Bodom had stayed good for one more CD before Blooddrunk(Lets hope they recover from that album) but if you want to get into Bodom the CDs that will most get you into them are Hatebreeder and Follow the Reaper, not a track on either thats below a 4/5

Lick496
September 12th 2012


36 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Love this album.


OF COURSE IT SOUNDS LIKE BODOM! ITS FINNISH DEATH METAL!



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