Album Reviews

Amorphis – Halo Review

Label: Atomic Fire Records

Genre: Melodic Metal

Release Date EU: February 11th, 2022

 

Tracklist:

Northwards
On The Dark Waters
The Moon
Windmane
A New Land
When The Gods Came
Seven Roads Come Together
War
Halo
The Wolf
My Name Is Night

 

 

Amorphis is a constant deliverer of very well-forged metal since 1992 when the band from Helsinki, Finland premiered with ‘The Karelian Isthmus’. The breakthrough came one year later with the ‘Tales from the Thousand Tales’ and what followed was an impressive journey through the worlds of heavy metal.

Rooted in northern death metal, the band kept a few elements of their early days. Some parts are still enriched by deep growls although the focus shifted towards the melodic metal with edges and heaviness.

The newest offer from the Finnish powerhouse is entitled ‘Halo’ and features eleven new songs. The sextet used four years to work on their newest achievement and listening to ‘Halo’ clearly shows that the time was used well. Amorphis’ fourteenth studio offers a great blend of catchy melodies, powerful riffs, and well-executed vocals, mostly clean and more than once with deep growls. The success formula of the band is bringing together all these elements into a unique sound. Each of the songs, penned by the sextet, can be directly identified as being an Amorphis hymn. These guys developed their musical signature which evolve with every new album.

The songs on the ‘Halo’, are heavy and melodic. At the same time, some layers support the thrill of tunes like the vibrant ‘When the Gods Came’ and the epic ‘On the Dark Waters’, the latter being a thundering metal anthem that showcases Amorphis at its best.

It doesn’t matter where you drop the needle. It will be always a rewarding metal experience you get offered by the Finns. ‘War’ is another example of a song that has more than just one layer. From steel-hammer heaviness to tangible parts, ‘War’ entails all, a good metal track needs to have in place. At the same time, none of the tracks on ‘Halo’ is overloaded. Amorphis was able to add the mentioned layers and twists to their music while always keeping the focus on song and atmosphere. Every note, every part of these eleven songs is where it is supposed to be. There is a master plan of how this album should sound and still there is an ease that allows the band to follow their musical heartbeat.

I also want to mention the title track. ‘Halo’ is a real name-giver to the album since it reflects very well what this longplayer stands for. Spreading a melancholic mood, the song is an anthemic highlight of the album and it’s impossible to not appreciate this track.

‘Halo’ is a mature album that showcases a band that after three decades still has a passion for metal. There is no sign of tiredness or musical fatigue. Amorphis’ heart still pumps real metal through their veins which allows the six Finns to unleash an album that belongs already in early 2022 to the highlights of this year.

 

Written by: Markus Wiedenmann

Ratings:  (9/10)

 

 

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