Seven Sins A Second

Written by: PP on 11/12/2007 22:44:16

Looking back at January 2006, Sinamore's debut "A New Day" opened a new dimension in the world of gothic rock, combining the majesties of power metal together with the typically dark gothic metal atmospheres in a melancholic setting, effectively blowing a wave of fresh air into the stale genre through its 10 beautifully composed gothic rock songs. Not quite as love-melody obsessed as HIM, but still far from being as dark as the other gothic rock bands, Sinamore was a band that differed from its counterparts in almost every sense, starting from the very distinction that instead of a high-range female vocalist, the band utilized the grand voice of Mikko Heikkilä. Quoting directly from my review back then: "His vocals come across as sad, high pitched and majestic - all at the same time". This was the strength of their excellent debut, a trait that was praised by the media all around the globe.

So why on earth the band downplays their strengths and fortifies their weaknesses on their new album, "Seven Sins A Second", is a bit of a mystery to me. Heikkilä's grand voice is rarely allowed to stretch into the absolute top range that it belongs to, and is left sinking into the deep and medium-deep scales, perhaps in an attempt to make the atmosphere even darker than it originally was. This, in my opinion, is a huge mistake, because the very thing that made "A New Day" so enjoyable was the contrast of majestic/melancholic vocals above cleanly produced colossal guitar work.

This brings me into my second point of criticism: the instrumentals, or rather the production/mixing of them. Following my hypothesis of trying to make everything sound bigger and darker at the same time, the guitars are massively spacey, and dominate the album in every conceivable way. If we weren't dealing with mostly chord-based material I wouldn't have a problem with it, but we are, and the production has focused on making them rumble as if they had five bassists in the band!

My third point of criticism liest in the song writing, which seems to have slumped a couple of levels down from the debut album. Gone are the larger-than-life vocal harmonies and the oddly tranquillizing large spaces, now replaced with a slightly more chaotic feel and less distinguishable melodies.

There are only a couple of songs on "Seven Sins A Second" where the band returns to shape, most notably on "The Burning Frame" and "Dressed In White", but even on these tracks it's far too easy to push them aside and stick any given track from "A New Day" on. In the category of most disappointing sophomore albums of 2007, Sinamore is quite high on my list for this year.


Download: The Burning Frame
For the fans of: HIM, The 69 Eyes, SaraLee
Listen: Myspace

Release date 05.11.2007
Napalm Records
Provided by Target ApS

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