GENRE: Depressive Black Metal?
RATING: 8.0 / 10
October Falls is a Finnish post-black metal band – or something of that nature anyway – that is the brainchild of guitarist and vocalist M. Lehto. The project originally started influenced by early Opeth and heavily by Ulver‘s Kveldssanger record – a thing that Hr. Lehto and I share in common. 2013’s The Plague of a Coming Age is the project’s fourth full-length record, the third of which one could call metal. It features Ensiferum bassist Sami Hinkka for the first time (whose performance is remarkable and makes this record better), and also drums from Moonsorrow‘s Marko Tarvonen who has played on every record.
When you think October Falls the first thing you should probably do is to think Ulver or Agalloch. Not because the band is particularly derivative, though they certainly have their similarities, but instead because it is precisely this kind of feel that The Plague of a Coming Age locks in. While The Womb of Primordial Nature and A Collapse of Faith had long songs and lots of atmosphere, October Falls in 2013 is less epic in scope and more focused in the writing. Unlike previous albums, none of the the tracks get over 8 minutes long – a welcome respite in a world of metal that is obsessed with epic soundscapes and has forgotten what a song is.
Instead of spending too much time being Moonsorrow or Opeth, October Falls has settled into songwriting that is ethereal and a feel that is almost laid back, pushed beneath layers of reverb. It calls up foggy forests, rain on a cabin’s roof and a sense bareness. But the melodic nature of the record, its immediately hooky writing and the clean vocals of guest vocalist Tomi Joutsen (Amorphis), also makes for addictive listening. The Plague of a Coming Age is October Falls‘ best record yet and one of the first must-hear records of 2013.
Review by: AMG