In Mourning
Garden of Storms


2.5
average

Review

by Robert Garland CONTRIBUTOR (295 Reviews)
October 14th, 2019 | 27 replies


Release Date: 10/04/2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Shoulder’s tired, arms are heavy.

Have you ever got so lost in the moment, so caught up in what you're doing that you lose sight of what happens after? In many ways In Mourning's latest fits this vague and open line of questioning. Garden Of Storms is a potentially stellar album that’s unfortunately lost “in the moment”. Put simply, it lacks the basic memorability and status found in the band’s previous studio efforts. Harsh? Well, probably; especially considering my gripes with Garden Of Storms isn’t directly found within the music’s talented songwriters - but in the album’s lack of variance, song-writing awareness, unconscious recycling ideas, less than perfect execution and slight production issues.

On first listen, Garden Of Storms is a sublime experience, but it’s first impressions are incredibly misleading. It’s clear, even after a couple of spins that there’s no foresight in regards to the album’s ‘bigger picture’. While each section and every instrument is played with near perfection (bordering completely in the realms of overdoing things) the album’s same-ness sucks life from this particular garden. The emotional depth of the music is lost in weaves of its more augmented parts and in doing so, In Mourning’s music begins to suffer for it. Despite the band’s slow but noticeable move away from the doom-led era of the group’s foundation, there’s still quite a lot of the old being blended into the new. Garden Of Storms’s opening piece, “Black Storm” for example takes light black metal aesthetics and decidedly half-cocked 70s rapport. As usual, Netzell’s Swe-death growls reign supreme, falling close to Åkerfeldt-ian likeness while punching straight through the progressive death soundscape In Mourning lean heavily into - but it’s the melodic cleans that [more than] occasionally miss their mark. “Yields Of Sand” and “Tribunals Of Suns” in particular emphasises this hiccup due to some underperformed melodies and lack-lustre clean energies. It’s in moments like these that In Mourning does better by contrasting the heavier death metal sections... if only that wasn’t the band’s answer for every underwhelming use of crooned, clean sung passage on this record. “Hierophant”, while great as a stand-alone display of In Mourning’s music, pales in the face of the two tracks to follow it. Kind of like a girl taking her ugly friend out clubbing… but with absolutely no upside.

This review might start to sound like it’s favouring just one side of the argument, but it’s not all bad news. Of the album’s seven tracks, there are but two clear stand-outs that buck a trend of middlesome overbearance and overwrought instrumental blending. It’s a feature made more noticeable that these songs are juxtaposed together. “Magenta Ritual” is a majestic offering that lives up to the standard of music Garden Of Storms as a whole, fails to achieve. The track itself is a centrepost of hypnotic melody that combines complementing features of doom, post metal and the band’s natural foundation of melo-death. Netzell’s vocal styles do not falter here and despite the breathing space a slower, more melody based track might offer, the weight of the band’s delivery quashes the air, providing ample emotion in its place. On the other hand, “Huntress Moon” may well be the band’s best ‘heavy’ track. Ardent riffs latch onto furious blast beats and well-phrased growls. Of all of the album’s points of refutation, it’s the percussion alone that sits above criticism.

As a whole, Garden Of Storms is flawed, even though it’s individual elements stand well alone. Most of the issues that surface here come from idea execution and their blending into a over-saturated mess of sorts. In Mourning have built a reputation around quality music to which only a percentage of this record measures. Other issues arise in the form of studio slip, namely the bass being mixed too highly (Wait. Am I really complaining about too much bass presence?) that washes out some of the guitar melodies during the album’s heavier sections and the cymbals to near non-existence. To this effect it’s hard to garner whether Garden Of Storms is building to something in the band’s future releases, going through the motions and lucking out on a couple spectacular tracks or failing to achieve on both the potential and standards of music showcased on other releases. No matter which way listeners' take it, Garden Of Storms isn’t a complete write-off, but it’s hard to contain the disappointment.



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user ratings (65)
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
October 14th 2019


10394 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

gawd, I'm such a negative nancy lately.

frozencarl
October 14th 2019


753 Comments


"Kind of like a girl taking her ugly friend out clubbing… but with absolutely no upside"

damn

Digging: Shadecrown - Riven

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
October 14th 2019


10394 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Am I allowed to say shit like that in 2019, probably should have checked.

trilo
October 14th 2019


2794 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

nice review. this was my first experience with the band and it was kinda not good. very middle of the road imo

Digging: Blood Incantation - Hidden History of the Human Race

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
October 14th 2019


10394 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

Try spinning Weight Of Oceans and see how you go.

MementoMori
October 14th 2019


63 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

@Trilo also check out their debut. I'm fairly sure that their first album and Weight of Oceans are their best works.

Digging: A Forest of Stars - Beware the Sword You Cannot See

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
October 14th 2019


10394 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5 | Sound Off

^^



Not an unwarranted call either, even if people shouldn't fall into the "debut = best" trap.

MementoMori
October 14th 2019


63 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

I find that to be rarely the case if I'm totally honest. Barely any of my favourite artists hit their pinnacle with their first album.

DungeonBoy
October 14th 2019


6772 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

album average is dancing around that 4.0. Good review, interesting comparison between your average at the moment. Heard Black Storm and thought it was a killer track. Love the Opethian riffing in the verse, and overall songwriting, so i'm curious at what point this drops off.. let's find out

Digging: Weeping Sores - False Confession

Pikazilla
October 14th 2019


4956 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Great album imo

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
October 14th 2019


16306 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

album rules you negative nancy you

kzy
October 14th 2019


38 Comments


only Black Storm and Huntress Moon i've enjoyed so far. rest of them just ugh... luckily Insomnium save this month!

Digging: PassCode - Locus

Scheumke
October 14th 2019


1270 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Yeah I certainly enjoyed this more than you Nocte. Did take it down a notch though, doesn't really have that much replay value for me, but the overall quality was pretty damn good I thought.

Digging: Type O Negative - October Rust

tenderscum
October 14th 2019


96 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

First exposure to this band as well tbh. Middle of the road feels appropriate.

DungeonBoy
October 14th 2019


6772 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This album grooves real hard. The rhythm section here is sick, the riffs are interesting, and the songwriting is creative and engaging.



"the album’s lack of variance"



I'm not sure we jammed the same album ;)

MementoMori
October 14th 2019


63 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Most songs just wear off for me before they come to a close. Just think their debut and third album are superior to this to quite an extent.

trilo
October 14th 2019


2794 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

thanks for the recs i’ll check their other stuff out m/

Dmax28
October 14th 2019


691 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

That's so strange. This is one of the best albums I've heard at both having incredible moments and having those moments heightened by the flow of the entire album. It sounds like they considered the bigger picture the whole time they were composing this.

Itwasthatwas
October 14th 2019


1944 Comments


This was already on of the most unmemorable bands of all time so this must be god awful then based on your review

DungeonBoy
October 14th 2019


6772 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

the thing is, it's not



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