Frozen Tranquillity is a collaboration in between two projects from Russia (one partly injected with human flesh from Ukrainian soil), which sees the light via, once again, an unholy marriage in between Metallic Media and Symbol Of Domination Productions. It brings three tracks by each participant, resulting in an experience that lasts for fifty four minutes. Here we go…
Поезд Родина are quite a young two-man project with a guy from Russia and one from Ukraine, both of them joining forces as well under the moniker Montes Insania (on December 24th 2015 I did upload my review for their [disappointing] Absurdum-album, by the way). As Поезд Родина (Poezd Rodina) they did modestly surprise me (not really ‘impress me’) with Белая даль (Belaya Dal’), their debut that was released at the very end of 2014 (review posted on April 29th 2015). This time, however, the duo shows quite an impressing progression in both song writing and performance. There is less unstructured cacophony, being replaced by a more coherent and natural song writing, which isn’t but a great evolution. Besides, the sound did approve a lot, i.e. that the result is less ‘mechanical’ and much more organic. But the tracks themselves are more profound and well-thought too, more atmospheric and convincing in both song writing and performance. This band’s Funeral Doom lacks of originality, but it’s quite inventive from time to time, including a highly interesting level of variation. Long-stretched tremolo leads, an ultra-heavy rhythm section, hypnotic keyboards, and both deep and hallucinogenic grunts and painful screams, deliver the basement of the three tracks, yet each of those pieces gets injected by fabulous intermezzos, varying from synth-based integrity over piano-led beauty to semi-exotic expressions. 8/10
Funeral Tears are an outfit by Nikolay Seredov, known from e.g. Стахановцы and Taiga; and once again I like to refer to a review I (recently) did, being the one for Taiga’s 2015-release Gaia; check out the upload of December 24th 2015, in case you’re interested. Actually, this act too dwells within spheres of funereally Doom Melancholy. Funeral Tears, however, and this in contradiction to Poezd Rodina, perform their stuff with a Pagan-angle, a sound (and performance) much more dwelling within dimensions of epic and victory, rather than desolation and despair. This project too comes with quite some variety within its lengthy compositions, including several changes in structure and tempo, and including many intermezzos and additional excerpts. In general this material comes closer to the tradition of the U.K. or Sweden, yet still maintaining that typifying persuasion that characterises the great but, unfortunately, largely underestimated Russian Funeral Doom scene (note of positivism: with labels like Satanath / Symbol Of Domination Productions, Frozen Light, Moscow Funeral League, Stygian Crypt, Silent Time Noise and the likes, things are changing for the better!). Funeral Tears come with a massiveness in approach that is skull-crushing, overpowering and, at the same time, mesmerizing and suffocating, and with inclusion of the sublime sound quality (indeed it is!), it leaves undersigned contented and satisfied. …and unsatisfied, craving for more to follow! 9/10
I think this split-album shows a glimpse of the superiority from East-European soil. In a list that includes Abstract Spirit, Forest Stream, Advent, Who Dies In Siberian Slush, Taiga, Emptiness Soul, Station Dysthymia and many more, both these two projects involved with Frozen Tranquillity prove why the Russian scene is of a superior quality when talking about Sonic Unhappiness and Aural Obscurity.