Review Summary: Depressed Mode is a funeral doom metal band that may not just touch you where it hurts the most, it will most likely haunt you for the next week, but if not, it's one hell of a funeral doom album.
Depressed Mode is a fairly unknown band in music, and in metal in general, but any funeral doom metal fan will tell you who they are. They are a funeral doom metal band from Finland, home to a mass amount of heavy metal bands, like ...And Oceans
, Children of Bodom
, Sonata Arctica
, and many more. It is also home to a few of the greatest funeral doom bands ever, such as Skepticism
, Shape of Despair
, and Thergothon
, and doom metal in general, like Rapture
, Swallow the Sun
, Hanging Garden
, and so on. So, needless to say, these guys know exactly where they come from and how to live up to the rest of their fellow countrymen. The album can send mixed signals at times, though. For example, they come from Finnish metal scene, but covered Burzum
's hit Dunkelheit. Strange, right? But then you realize, these guys draw influences from all over the world, and started packing them into two albums so far. I can see their gothic or melodeath influences, I can't tell because it's funeral doom. And they do a good job at emulating the emotions you may have. The songs on the album are relatively short for funeral doom standards (between 4:14 to 6:57), but it's funeral doom alright. Most of it is slow and it has the keyboards found in the genre. Now, let's break it down.
*Track 1: Alone
The album starts innocently enough, a 16-second piano section. Then the strings come blazing bullets fast, and then BOOOM! The instruments and a growl come in. A surprise that the piano pretty much set you up for. It has a unique song structure for funeral doom, but don't mistaken it for progressive. If you listen to this closely, the growls are more death metal-esque than funeral doom and has screams, a new for the genre from what I've listened to. However, the instruments dominate and the piano comes in at almost random.
*Track 2: So Long
The piano starts things off again,and then BOOM! just like the last song. However, you notice immediately the female vocals, which reminds me of Funeral, except the growls are coming in. I believe she is Natalie Koskinen from fellow funeral doomers Shape of Despair
. This is where the gothic influences come in, the beauty and the beast vocal style. The vocals rock, but the growls almost overpower the female vocals. They know this because the guy has a sort-of solo section. The female vocals, though, greatly complement the instrumentation. It's also the shortest song on the album.
*Track 3: Words of Silence
This is the part where you say "the piano starts every song off!" However, on this incredibly dark track, the piano is short, and the female vocals start to come out, and add melody to the song, which the guitars and strings are supposed to do. This song stands out from the rest because of the melodies inside. The band knows it's the best one, because they made a music video of it.
*Track 4: Suffer In Silence
"Finally, the guitars start the song instead of the piano!" Yes, now for some diversity! The female vocals are now soloing at the beginning, and the male vocals are now more whispering. The guitar solo comes in at about 4:00, but that's it. The female does the chorus, and it kinda makes you settled as it goes on until the end.
*Track 5: Ghosts of Devotion
The beginning is ambient, like a waterfall in a cave, where explosions are echoing. Then the bass starts the song off. For those wondering when the slow funeral doom influences come in, this is where. It is dark, and the guitars come in at almost 2:00, but this will satisfy for the slow people (slow as in hoping for a slow funeral doom song to keep up with). At 3:00, the instruments leave and the choir is left with echoing thuds. Then they come back again! This time it shows the vocalist's clean vocals, and almost sudden transition from the clean vocals to growls. Then, the clean vocals come back again. Then, the strings and the piano are left because the instruments left again, but the clean vocals are there, and they're almost haunting as they go on until the song ends with a church bell chiming.
*Track 6: The Sun Is Dead
"Oh thank God!" The bright piano makes melodies until the song turns to a high gear. Your heart starts to slow down from the haunting at the end of the last song. It's not the fastest, but the drums are fast and the riff is the fastest off the album. The female vocals are somewhat doing the strings' job. This is goes on until the piano brings more beauty in, and then the bass and drums come back when the instruments leave. Then, the guitars come back, and the mournful chants from the dude come. The vocals go dangerously low, but don't become growls and eventually accompany the growls for a bit until they have gone entirely.
*Track 7: Fallen Angel
The piano at the beginning of this is the most beautiful thing ever, and ditto forthe montage of female vocals at the beginning. The drums are electronic and give an almost pop-ish feel. Then, guitars add to this montage. Then, the female vocals go bye-bye and the guitars and strings are left. The drums become real afterward. Then, the female vocals come in and out afterward. The male vocals aren't here, they can't harm you anymore...not yet at least. This song is not as tense as everything else in the album. You start to stew in the beauty of the song.
*Track 8: Dunkelheit
For black metal and/or Burzum fans, you kind of know what to expect from this. The parts that you don't, the fact that the piano is pretty much doing the guitar leads and the guitars are pretty much the rhythm. When you know when the vocals come in, the guy is doing clean vocals, and the female is providing ambiance, you can barely hear them unless you listen very closely. Granted, this is good. However, this is the longest song in the entire album, and it's shorter than the original by 6 whole, entire...seconds. This is a close second, because the production's better (no fuzz-face), and you know, the players are, you know, not church-burners or were ever accused of murdering someone. Other than that, the song is awesome and ends with a nice sweet violin.
*Track 9: Cold
Oh, you thought the album was over after the cover, because that's usually what happens, a band ending an album with a cover. Well, too bad! This adieu song starts with a violin and a piano, which I suspect the female vocalist does. This goes on for like 2 minutes until the guitars, drums, bass, and growls come in. The female vocals provided ambiance again for this one. The piano started the album, it makes sense it's gonna end it.
With that, Depressed Mode became. They continue to make some of the darkest music ever, with a slight change in style. However, this album was very innovative. The first I've heard with screams, and the beauty and the beast vocal styling (besides Funeral). The most surprising thing I learned about this is that the vocals were done in Ossy's (the lead singer and orchestration-er) home-studio, and Natalie's vocals were done in a closet! However, this doesn't change the fact that Depressed Mode is awesome. They are awesome regardless. To Depressed Mode, keep makin' music. I have yet to review ...For Death... I'll get the review out soon. In the meantime, guess what? I have a YouTube channel, and I've uploaded both Depressed Mode albums. I did so for people to not miss out on the few songs that weren't available. My channel is (http://www.youtube.com/user/mcg413#p/p). So, for those who want to listen to it, check it out.
P.S. I am not trying to promote my YouTube channel, it's just a fact if you want to listen to the album.