Theatre Of Tragedy
Forever is the World


3.5
great

Review

by manosg USER (20 Reviews)
January 20th, 2014 | 18 replies | 570 views


Release Date: 2009 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A fitting swan song from one of the originators of the gothic metal scene of the 90s.

4 of 4 thought this review was well written

There are times when a certain album or band takes you back to the very first time you listened to it. One of those bands that take me back to an era when I was a young lad looking for music without the assistance of the Internet is Theatre of Tragedy. The reason that I didn’t use the Internet back then is simply because it wasn’t as widespread as it is today; and before you start calling names and using phrases such as “old as dirt”, bear in mind that Theatre of Tragedy’s debut was released in 1995. However, I was lucky enough to be exposed to the band’s music with the help of their 1996 masterpiece Velvet Darkness They Fear. That album was also my introduction to the gothic scene that was becoming increasingly strong during the 90s and boasted bands such as Anathema, Paradise Lost, My Dying Bride, Type O Negative and others. At the time of their debut and sophomore release, Theatre of Tragedy were known for their mix of deep male growls and female operatic vocals that became known as “Beauty and the Beast” vocal style. Moreover, in their first three releases they also used predominately Early Modern English in their lyrics; a trait that added to the mystique of the band’s sound.

However, Theatre of Tragedy was one of those bands from the doom/gothic scene that changed their style and evolved with every release of theirs. As a result, from the doom/gothic sound and the “Beauty and the Beast” vocals of their first two releases, they went to a more straightforward gothic third album. However, evolution is not always for the better and as Theatre of Tragedy were gaining fans with their initial three releases, they suddenly lost a large portion of them with their fourth album Musique. Why? Because they evolved so much that metalheads couldn’t follow their industrial and pop tendencies that dominated Musique and Assembly. I was one of those metalheads and since then (2002) I simply lost track of the band.

Fast forward to 2006 and the release of their penultimate album Storm. Once again, Theatre of Tragedy had evolved but now in a “return to roots” manner. Three years after they parted ways with their lead singer and most beloved member among their fans, Theatre of Tragedy released an album that was closer to their gothic rock sound of Aegis. Hopefully for some, they finalized this shift with their final album Forever is the World. The now somewhat older young man that loved their initial albums is content. Granted, their “new” female singer is not as good as Liv Kristine. Liv Kristine’s voice was haunting, cinematic and characterized a whole generation of doom/gothic fans. No one would be as good as Liv Kristine but Forever is the World is probably Theatre of Tragedy’s best release since Aegis and this is what matters most.

So, gone are the industrial and electro elements in the band’s attempt to leave Musique and Assembly behind once and for all. From the very first track of the album, the listener can experience the doomy and gloomy atmosphere and the “Beauty and the Beast” vocals that made the band dear to so many fans of their 90s material. The ambiance is significantly colder on Forever is the World and the guitars are definitely doomier rather than industrial but melodic at the same time. The long time fan can easily feel that the band has made a conscious choice with this album to play some gothic music in the manner they did in the past. Moreover, Nell Sigland sounds more confident in her second attempt as the lead singer of the band. Even though she doesn’t provide us with a mind-blowing performance, she complements the rest of the band ideally and her voice is on the spotlight of every track. In addition, there are moments where her voice resembles that of Liv Kristine but overall she sounds colder and more girly than her predecessor on the microphone. Actually, those of you who are familiar with the modern sound of Anathema or even Paradise Lost’s One Second will find elements of those albums on Forever is the World. Another element that has returned is the warm sound of band leader and oldest member Raymond Rohonyi.

On the other hand, the presence of deep male growls is very limited as they appear sporadically on three tracks only. In addition, even though the material is very well executed, Theatre of Tragedy could have added a bit more of their character to the final outcome. It’s not that the album sounds generic but they could have done a somewhat better job of infusing it with more piano and death growls as mentioned earlier.

To sum up, Forever is the World is an album that is bound to be enjoyed not only by lovers of the band’s first period but by fans of gothic metal as well. This is also a fitting end to a band that influenced heavily the atmospheric scene of the 90s but decided to break up simply because their way of living couldn’t coexist with a “rock and roll” lifestyle.



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user ratings (37)
Chart.
3.5
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
manosg
January 20th 2014



4665 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Full album here: http://grooveshark.com/#!/album/Forever+Is+The+World+Digipak/6557974

As always, your communication is key.

Digging: Jan Akkerman - Tabernakel

TheSlenderMan
January 20th 2014



606 Comments


Hide and Seek was always enjoyable to me.

piroga84
January 20th 2014



113 Comments


oh you take me back in the day...i'll listen today! good work seems you are a real fan of ToT
i too fell in love with Liv

manosg
January 20th 2014



4665 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Well, if you're a fan of Aegis prepare yourself for a treat!

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
January 20th 2014



18570 Comments


2 manosg reviews in 2 days? sweeet

Digging: Somos - Temple of Plenty

manosg
January 20th 2014



4665 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

haha thanks man! I wrote this one in a couple of hours mostly as a tribute to the band. Theatre of Tragedy is one of those bands that take me back to my teenage years whenever I listen to them.

Atari
Contributing Reviewer
January 20th 2014



18570 Comments


that's cool. review was really informative as always ;) maybe i'll give them a go later

manosg
January 20th 2014



4665 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks man. Most times I write too much stuff which may put off some people from reading my reviews so my next ones will probably be shorter.

Regarding the album, if you enjoy some gothic metal you'll probably like this one. However, if you listen to just one album from this band you might want to go for Velvet Darkness They Fear which is a 5 for me.

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
January 20th 2014



8221 Comments


Solid review. Ironically enough, the only albums I've heard from this band are Musique and Assembly. I like them both, but aren't crazy over them.

I guess I really owe it to myself to check this band's 90s stuff.

Digging: Metsatoll - Karjajuht

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
January 20th 2014



5607 Comments


Magnus check their first three albums at all costs, especially Velvet Darkness They Fear.

Digging: Mekong Delta - In A Mirror Darkly

manosg
January 20th 2014



4665 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Voivod, even though they're very different do you prefer their debut or Aegis?

deslad
January 20th 2014



271 Comments


Great review; although somewhat long it is surprisingly easy to read. I am gonna give the album a go at some point.

Digging: Queen - Live at Wembley 1986

manosg
January 20th 2014



4665 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

^Thanks dude! The review is quite long, indeed. My next couple of reviews will definitely be shorter.

Metalstyles
Staff Reviewer
January 20th 2014



8221 Comments


I don't think the length is at all a problem. If you want to make your next reviews shorter because you feel like it, go ahead, but just so you know, there's definitely nothing wrong with the length here.

manosg
January 20th 2014



4665 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks man. As deslad said, this one is quite easy to read but sometimes just the image of a long review might deter some guys from reading the test. Thanks for the input though, I appreciate it.

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
January 20th 2014



5607 Comments


@manosg

I haven't heard the debut as much as I should, so I choose Aegis, there are some tracks in it.

bloc
January 20th 2014



34489 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

4 songs on this rule hard

Digging: Gamma Ray - Empire of the Undead

manosg
January 21st 2014



4665 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah there's definitely some great material on here.



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