Sorcerer
Lamenting of the Innocent


3.5
great

Review

by Fernando Alves CONTRIBUTOR (61 Reviews)
May 30th, 2020 | 39 replies


Release Date: 05/29/2020 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Institutionalized sorcery

After fifteen years of hibernation, one can safely say that Sorcerer are among the most successful comebacks of the past decade. 2015's In the Shadow of the Inverted Cross not only catapulted the band into the pole position of the international epic doom scene, but also managed to revitalize a genre that desperately needed new references, even if they were resurrections from a distant past. Despite keeping strong links with canons previously established by Black Sabbath, Candlemass or Solitude Aeternus, Sorcerer's debut album displayed a somewhat contemporary and captivating outfit. Not that it brought anything new or innovative, but its seductive songwriting coupled with the band's top performances placed the album ahead of the pack. Their place in the sun was reinforced two years later with The Crowning of the Fire King which showed a larger than life approach, positioning Sorcerer in more melodic and comprehensive territories. Their sophomore not only cemented the band as one of Sweden's most reliable exports in recent years, but also showcased the band's unwavering willingness to expand their epic doom formula. Anders Engberg's vocals have matured splendidly and Kristian Niemann and Peter Hallgren's guitar work has risen to a whole new level. At this point, Sorcerer were at their creative peak displaying an unshakable confidence in both their aesthetic approach and technical skills.

In the band's own words, Lamenting of The Innocent intends to be an artistic expansion in every direction, aiming to capture the same vibe as on The Crowning of The Fire King while evolving the formula into a more wide-ranging and diverse aesthetic. The concept suits the band's thematics, revolving around inquisition and sorcery, both from a personal and Church points of view, thus mirroring the laments occurred in a time of oppression and great terror. Therefore, the intention and concept are suitable for a band that through its third release seeks to further solidify its position on the international scene. However, ambition is not always able to materialize perfectly, whether by external, internal or artistic factors. And, in my opinion, Lamenting of The Innocent doesn't fully achieve the band's declared intention. If, on one hand, songs such as the title track, 'Institoris' or 'Path to Perdition' meet the band's high standards, on the other hand, we also come across a handful of more ordinary, generic moments. 'Deliverance', 'Age of the Damned', 'Condemned' or 'Dance with the Devil', although not mediocre, don't possess the virtues of the band's most recent past. It seems that somewhere during the creative process around stylistic diversification, the band lost focus and inspiration, and instead of taking a step forward, the Swedish lads started spinning around, getting bewildered along the way. A bit like Whitesnake in Slip of the Tongue, who were also unable to deliver the best follow-up to their colossal predecessor. I believe Sorcerer would benefit from focusing the album around the triumvirate 'Lamenting of the Innocent', 'Institoris' and 'Path to Perdition', making these the cornerstones from which the entire artistic structure would emerge. This focus would have given a greater overall solidity while avoiding the dispersion and inconsistency present in the album's second half. However, despite these remarks, Lamenting of The Innocent is by no means a failed act, as it achieves in certain moments the splendor of its predecessors, and those glamorous moments are indeed brilliant. 'Institoris' majestic chorus, the epic swing of 'Lamenting of the Innocent' or closing track's opening solos are some of those segments worth highlighting. On the other hand, Sorcerer's melodic epic doom foundation remains well-preserved, thus ensuring that the fanbase stays loyal to the band's witchcraft crusade. As expected, the musical performances meet expectations. Anders Engberg remain at the top of his game and the guitars, although overall less inspired, are still among the best the genre has to offer.

I have to be perfectly honest and say that Lamenting of the Innocent isn't the outcome I was expecting. I wish the band had consolidated the spirit of the previous album while taking a step forward by presenting some stylistic novelties. I know it's not an easy task as inspiration is not a button that we can press whenever we need to, however I feel Sorcerer has the potential to do better, and because I'm sure of it, I will always be too demanding when it comes to this band. That being said, I don't want my little personal disappointment to question Lamenting of the Innocent's intrinsic virtues, since those qualities are evident and undeniable. And although I feel the band has settled down and institutionalized for now, I strongly believe their epic story will soon reveal more interesting chapters.




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user ratings (17)
3.6
great
other reviews of this album
PsychicChris (4)
Sorcerer is still making the most of their second wind....


Comments:Add a Comment 
TheNotrap
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2020


14345 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I was hoping for something a bit more inspired, but the album does have its strong highlights. 'Institoris' is probably my favorite song of the month.



Full stream:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fvNxS6P2eoE

http://sorcererdoom.bandcamp.com

Digging: Convocation - Ashes Coalesce

TheNotrap
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2020


14345 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Thanks for the feature guys ;)

Pikazilla
May 30th 2020


11299 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Feeling a strong 4 on this one at the moment. Epic doom at its best!

TheNotrap
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2020


14345 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I'm glad you're enjoying it Pika. Institoris, Path to Perdition and title track are my favorites songs.

rockandmetaljunkie
May 31st 2020


9114 Comments


Not a lot of people are on to this, which is kind of strange if you consider the number of fans they attracted with their previous releases.

Nice review, trap

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2020


12680 Comments


Really nice work Fern. Can't say I've given these guys the proper time of day but i'll work them into my 2020 playlist nonetheless.

Pikazilla
May 31st 2020


11299 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Noctebro, you like Candlemass?

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2020


12680 Comments


When I feel like kickin' it old school.

Listening to the Cosmovore EP at the moment.

Pikazilla
May 31st 2020


11299 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Vessel is a banger.



Basically, listen to this if you want some old-school metal. Soaring vox, epic solos and fat production, all in one package.

DDDeftoneDDD
May 31st 2020


12476 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Now we know notrap's real name m/

Digging: Convocation - Ashes Coalesce

TheNotrap
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2020


14345 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Hahah, let's see if it sticks, on the site I always see myself as my persona.



"Not a lot of people are on to this, which is kind of strange if you consider the number of fans they attracted with their previous releases."

The album just came out, I think it'll get more attention in the next few days. What did you think of it?



Thanks Nocte mate.

rockandmetaljunkie
May 31st 2020


9114 Comments


Working on my thesis the last couple of days so I don't see me jamming this anytime soon...

TheNotrap
Contributing Reviewer
May 31st 2020


14345 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Good luck then

bobbydylan
May 31st 2020


141 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this rules

rockandmetaljunkie
May 31st 2020


9114 Comments


Thanks!

manosg
Staff Reviewer
June 1st 2020


11958 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5 | Sound Off

Boy you're not kidding about the second half of this. Need to give it a couple more spins, but it definitely feels like a step down from their previous two.

Digging: Falconer - From A Dying Ember

TheNotrap
Contributing Reviewer
June 1st 2020


14345 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I also feel it's a step down, despite its strong highlights. Except for the closing track, the second half leaves a little to be desired.



Aren't you the one who has a thesis about the curse of the third albums? Hahah

DDDeftoneDDD
June 1st 2020


12476 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

does this sound like Candlemass, or a bit fresher by any mean?

TheNotrap
Contributing Reviewer
June 1st 2020


14345 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

The lads have a more larger than life, wide-ranging, approach. If you wish check the title track or Institoris, I think you'll get a better idea.

wildinferno2010
June 1st 2020


595 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is such a well-written review. Never heard of these guys and epic doom isn't really a genre I've delved into too much, but I'll be sure to give this band a listen soon. Maybe not this album, but something by them.



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