Location: Espoo, Finland
Genre: Progressive/Symphonic Doom Metal
Release: August 21, 2014
Format: MP3 (192 kbps)
Feature: Global Conquest – Upcoming Releases
By: Kris Kotlarik
I know I’m not alone in saying that there are albums that start out deceptively strong and have some innovative qualities to them, but then come away disappointed in the final outcome. Unfortunately, Edge Of Haze’s second album fits that description, but with a couple of caveats.
“Drawn” opens off Illumine on a fantastic note; there are signs of progressive instrumentation, much in the vein of Haken. The vocals sound like they could have been delivered from Soen’s front man, which I consider to be a high compliment. It takes a while to build into it, but the payoff is quite rewarding. There’s also a section of this track that almost takes on a lounge feel to it, further pointing the needle towards Haken and their over-the-top instrumental breaks. So far, we’re off to a promising start.
Most of the tracks that follow, however, sound way too much like their fellow countryman Insomnium, who I already wrote a mixed review of earlier this year. With that said, there are some nice touches of synth, especially in “Unlearn,” and the intro to “Into The Red Sun” sounds like A Natural Disaster-era Anathema, which was a nice change of pace.
The final two tracks return to the vibe that “Drawn” started. They don’t sound similar by a long shot; in fact, one could hear some djent or -core influences put in. It’s done in a tasteful way that makes a unique contribution to this album’s sound. The ending to “Newfound Horizon” is another unexpectedly pleasant twist.
Illumine is based loosely off of the plot from Escape From Camp 14. Those who have read the book may appreciate the lyrical content, which is already good by this genre’s generally standards, more.
Overall: Very uneven. There’s parts of this that make me want to come back for more, while other parts are merely just tagging along for the ride.