Album Reviews
Band: Sirenia

Title: The Seventh Life Path

Label: Napalm Records

Since their incarnation by former Tristania mastermind Morten Veland Sirenia in 2001, Sirenia have been a band with numerous vocalists, but since 2008 when Spanish vocalist Ailyn took up the vacant mike, the band have gone from strength the strength, with the band solidly treading a heavier path than on the first few albums.

This new opus takes off where their 2013 album ‘Perils of the Deep Blue’ left off, with Ailyn's vocals mixed with the occasional growl from Veland.  This is an album that is hard to pigeonhole into one specific genre and for me, that is a bonus.

Because of the diversity of the songs and moods on the album, this is without a doubt the band's finest album to date.  The superb orchestrations and choral sections really make the hairs on the back on your neck stand up, along with the excellent musicianship of all involved.

The album gets underway with the intro ‘Seti’, as the fanfares and haunting orchestrations bring an air of sailing down the Nile itself.  The intro seamlessly marches into the excellent opener proper ‘Serpent’, which is where we get the first taste of Ailyn’s superb vocals, with Veland bringing in that vocal beast to Ailyn’s beauty.  A monstrous assault on the senses to get things underway.

The epic Metal continues with the seven and a half minute majesty of ‘Once My Light’.  Again the mix of choral backing vocals and Ailyn’s magical vocals brings an mystical air to proceedings and this mysticism is continued with the excellent 'Elixir', where this time Veland delivers a less harsh accompanying vocal and at times the contrast of vocal styles really brings this song into life.

But if I had to pick one track off the album that really shows how Sirenia have evolved over their fourteen years then it has to be the wonderful ‘Sons of the North’.  A real metal-heads delight.  This is Sirenia at their very  best.  This is eight and a half minutes of pure Symphonic Metal at its most molten and powerful.

After the glorious symphonia of 'Sons of the North', what comes next is best described as Gothic Metal, but yet again a splendid overture of soaring melodies mixed with the heavier and darker elements.  Like I said before, this is a diverse album that unites genres in ways that shouldn’t work, but they do! 

It's back the traditional Symphonic sounds with the rampaging bittersweet crossover vocals of Veland and the clear cut Ailyn for ‘Concealed Disclaim’ and the faster tempoed ‘Insania’.  Then it is time for Sirenia to show their heavier side once more with the film score metal stylings of ‘Contemptuous Quitus’ and the grandiose aggressive tones of ‘The Silver Eye’.

This leads the way to the final song of the album, which closes on a lighter note with the excellent ballad ‘Tragedienne’, and if you buy the special edition album you get a bonus version of this with Ailyn singing in her native Spanish.  What ever version of the album you buy, you won't be disappointed as Sirenia take themselves to the next level and after catching the band at this years Dames of Darkness festival, they are definitely a band on the rise.  

Review by: Barry McMinn

 

Tracklisting:

1. Seti 
2. Serpent 
3. Once My Light 
4. Elixir 
5. Sons Of The North 
6. Earendel 
7. Concealed Disdain
8. Insania 
9. Contemptuous Quitus 
10. The Silver Eye
11. Tragedienne 

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