Twist And Shout

Angels of Distress
Artist: Shape Of Despair
Format: CD
New: Not in stock

Formats and Editions


1. Fallen
2. Angels of Distress
3. Quiet These Paintings Are
4. ...To Live for My Death...
5. Night's Dew


History teaches us that Finnish metal bands are typically one of two things: poppyor drunk. Sometimes, as in the case of Sentenced, even both. While their drinkinghabits remain in question, the bleak ambiance Fin quintet Shape of Despair fashionis anything but polished, hook-filled fare. The group’s slow, somber metaldirges are more like soundtracks to deeply damaged souls, evoking the strainsof extreme doom luminaries Disembowelment and Thergothon as well as Evoken andeven a bit of labelmates Morgion.

The long delayed sophomore LP Angels of Distress is a far more grandioseaffair compared to the cold and desolate soundscapes of the band’s 1998 debutShades Of…. In fact, Angels’ amplified orchestral movements recalleverything from the baroque chamber milieu of Lycia and Dead Can Dance to theunnerving, full-bodied crescendos of Godspeed You Black Emperor! and Neurosis.Perhaps more intriguing still is how S.O.D. (boy, that sounds good, has that namebeen taken yet?) employ female singing to complement these sparse melodies—thinkearly Paradise Lost, not anything from Cradle of Filth. Elsewhere, the vocalsof frontman Pasi Koskinen are an absolute juxtaposition to the warm and tunefuldelivery he provides for his main squeeze Amorphis, as his multi-tracked belly-of-the-beastroar nestles comfortably into the slow-moving vehicle built by guitarists JarnoSalovaara and Tomi Ullgren (both also of fellow frowning Fins Rapture). The resultingalbum centerpieces “Quiet These Paintings Are” and “…To Livefor My Death…” are impossibly extended, life-draining funeral processions,clocking out at an average 15 minutes each. A little long-winded, certainly, butas your mother told you, you can’t hurry gloom.
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