DEATH EMBRACES YOU ALL
Released: January 31, 2018
It has been now been 18 since Norwegian gothic metal band The Sins of Thy Beloved released their last album “Lake of Sorrow”, and gothic metal bands are becoming rare nowadays that share a similar sound, it appears the genre is fading away from the metal scene. Bands like Tristania and Sirenia have departed their sound more away from their pioneering sounds and turned to more mainstream.
But in 2015, a former The Sins of Thy Beloved member Stig Johansen, along with his new wife Susanne Dahle Johansen, who he met when he was in his former band Savn, during the filming for the single “Hang On” in 2014, formed the band a new band Mørke.
Mørke (translation. Darkness) is a new band with sounds inspiring from old school gothic metal bands from the 90s. The idea for the band came up when something felt missing in today's Gothic metal scene. The band only consists of two members; Stig Johansen who composes the music, and Susanne Johansen writes the lyrics, the vocal duties are shared by the couple, “beauty and the beast” style. The band is independent and all the production is done by them at their home studio.
My Desolate Lair
Death Embraces You All
Lost in the Darkest Veil of Tragedies
A Rosary's Lie
The Dark Prophecy
The Rose on Our Tomb
Conquered by the Thorns
The album consists of 10 tracks that makes up almost an hour of gothic metal nostalgia, and opens up with “My Desolate Lair”, and once the faux-violin and guitars started playing, I can already feel myself going back in time to the early years of gothic metal. Stig comes in first performing the death growls, then followed by Susanne’s, which at first I easily mistaken it to ex-TSOTB singer Anita Auglend as the both share haunting vocals that help accentuate the mood of the songs. The compositions were very solid with the doom and folk in the mix.
The following is the title track “Death Embraces You All”, which is one of the heavy tracks on the album. The lyrics both shared by Stig and Susanne throughout the whole song, the vocals were well-balanced between each other with the heavy atmospheric instrumentals. The next track “Lost in the Darkest of Veil Tragedies” begins with melancholic strings playing to which reminded me of Pete Johansen (who was done work with bands like Tristania, The Sins of thy Beloved, and Sirenia), and then comes in fast-pace guitar and drumming.
Not much is different for the rest of album, the tracks that follow use similar dynamics and structures, and nothing ever changes to the vocals. Being honest, it's not the perfect album even though the only flaw I have with this album is the mixing; the vocals were barely audible that I can barely understand what's being said and the instruments tends to play over them, but my thoughts still remains positive for this album. Like I just mention, the band is small and without a label. I appreciate how dedicated these two musicians are by using their own time and money as it took 2-3 years to make this album happen.
This album may not be for every metal fan, but it's enjoyable to hear something come from a band who wants prevent gothic metal to fade from the scene. There's nothing in bringing the classics to modern times, right? I rate “Death Embraces You All” a 7 out of 10.
Follow the band online:
Stig Johansen - All instruments and vocals
Susanne Dahle Johansen - Lyrics and vocals