A lyrical masterpiece, but falling short in some areas:
The Copenhagen five-piece has released their debut album, and this might have been one of the hardest reviews I’ve done so far. Deemed by the band as melodic Scandinavian rock, it was recorded and mixed by the legendary Flemming Rasmussen (Metallica, a.o.), and produced by the, just as legendary, but unfortunately late, Jan Langhoff (Aqua, a.o.). This combination should be the recipe for success, and Violmace does succeed to a certain degree, but there’s a feeling of unfinished stuff lurking beneath it all:
Violmace from Copenhagen has exsisted since 2009, and with a loyal fan movement behind them, they are a steady part of the local scene.
“Before You Leave” starts with singer Jarl Jakobsen’s dreamy and powerful voice, chanting some kind of munk-choir-like “…….turn your eyes to the other side……”. I don’t get this part, it seems out of place. The music itself is a nice mix of Coldplay and Kings Of Lion, and this theme continues beautifully for most of the album. Text wise, it’s easy to hear that there is a lot of thought behind the lyrics – the journey into modern man’s dark sides, in the mind where the unperfect really is the perfect, and where the mental struggle is fought, behind the facade where only the few is allowed. There are also hope and love for something bigger and better for humanity – so we’ve got some pretty big topics up on display here.
Tracks like “Immortal”, “No Angel”, “Ghost” and especially the title track “Beast Within”, are my personal favourites. Their homage to Kings Of Lion appeals to me, and every note is played to perfection. It’s not all good though: Mix-wise, the guitars are too far back in the mix, and this causes the whole album to not have that “oompf” and raunchyness that could have been otherwise. Too bad, really, as the music itself is very good. The thing is: This is Violmace’s debut album, and I honestly think they are trying too many things at the same time, and this rarely works. If this was the 3rd. or 4th. album, this might have been a better place to do these kind of things, or even spread out over multiple albums.
This is one of those albums where you hear something new every time you put it on, and it was played about 15 times before I felt I could do an honest review. It’s a masterpiece, but it’s not for everyone, as it’s a very deep album. Live, Violmace is a very different beast, and it’s a lot easier to feel the power behind these songs. Unfortunately this album leaves me with a kinda flat feeling.
I wrote about Violmace’s live performance last year, and that was a very different band compare to what I’m hearing in my headphones.
Check out the video for “Ghost” here:
Available on most platforms right now.