Vanha – Melancholia

Band: Vanha
Title: Melancholia
Label: Black Lion Records
Release Date: 30 December 2018
Country: Sweden
Format Reviewed: FLAC

There are bands which can be listened either if one likes the melancholy of the falling leaves, winter sunsets, gazing into the reflections of the dying day, or one simply loves the heavy, crushing, slow atmospheric doom-death. Or both actually. The abundance of bands in this field is enormous, however it is difficult to clean the seeds from the straw. Simply because if the music is not performed well and with heart, it can easily drown in boredom, similarity or it will appear to be much overacted and fake.  

It all began in the beginning of the 90s with bands like ANATHEMA, PARADISE LOST, MY DYING BRIDE, KATATONIA, THERGOTHON, SKEPTICISM, DECORYAH. By the middle of the 90s the scene developed and there were a huge colony of bands paving the path for this sad and heavy music. Many followed adding own tunes and sketches, own colours of tragedy, bitterness and gothic romance. Most recently bands like CLOUDS for example really nail this grieving pattern into a magnificent music.

And now we have VANHA’s brand new second album, simply called “Melancholia”, which was released on 30 December (!) and it provides 46 minutes of heartful atmospheric doom death, full of melancholy, bitter sweet memories, autumn sunsets, solitude and unbearable burdens of time and life…Oh well! Those six songs are done according to the standards of the genre – long, grieving, slow, crushing one’s small soul. Growling vocals, atmospheric keys and melodies, weeping guitars and pain.  The music simply transcends into a tearful lands of despair and makes the heart beat faster just because of the pain and all the feeling the tunes bring.

It is really a Storm of Grief, a Starless Sleep, a Sorrowful Fading AwayYour Heart In My Hands… The truth is that Jan Johansson as a sole member of VANHA, performing on all instruments, has captured very well the pulse for building up such album, and he has created a real melancholic soundscape for the bitter-heartened ones. There are two options for this romance to continue – either the pains Fade Away or the life does…

So all the festive mood should be rapidly forgotten. The year starts with slow dramatic sorrowful steps of a funeral procession, with face covered in tears. Alone. Towards the muddy soil of the grave. 8/10 Count Vlad

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8/10 To Greatness and Glory
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