Oathean – Fading Away into the Grave of Nothingness

up_070405_oathean8 years old and still generally unheard of, South Korea’s Oathean have emerged to test the waters on a much larger scale with their 3rd overall full-length album (1st for The End), “Fading Away into the Grave of Nothingness.” I’m sure these guys have earned a healthy local following (how many bands can you ramble off the top of your head from Korea anyway?), but their music on a global scale is really going to have to stand on its tippy toes to reach the scraps scattered about on the table where bands like Cradle of Filth, Dimmu Borgir and other like minded, death/goth/black metal bands so heartily feast. A thinness in the actual instrument sounds gives the core of this album very little emotion. I’m really unimpressed with various synth sounds or traditional instruments in music such as this, unless of course there is a solid sense of passionate songwriting, or the outcome is intertwined with some grit. This gritless album possesses many impressive musical moments where countless layers are audible in the mix, but the music strikes me as a corpse without a soul. The mid-ranged screams of the vocalist ride the fense between the death and black worlds with little inflection or intensity, allowing the symphonically inclined synthscapes to float about through an array of more eclectic and “traditional” instrument sounds, but Oathean’s bold attempt to colorize a style of metal that has been wrung out a few too many times at the world’s metal Laundromat, it’s really difficult to find the inspiration to free this disc from its jewel case prison cell. The occasional trash riff and always competent guitar work does try to ignite the spark struck off by Oathean’s obvious collective talent, but “Fading Away into the Grave of Nothingness” sounds like a debut album from a new band that hasn’t fully found their peak musical evolution yet. But this is album #3… there’s a lot of effort here for such a flat sounding album overall. – Marty
THE END

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~ by martyworm on January 3, 2009.

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