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Sorrows Path : Remastered 2005

The stuff that is included on this soon-to-be-released CD is not new. The older people in the doom metal scene (and specifically in the Greek doom metal scene) will remember the 'Demo Tape '95' and –probably- the 'Promo Tape 96' released by the Greek doomsters Sorrows Path. I sometimes really catch myself wondering what this band could have done if they hadn’t stopped their creative journey in the world of doom metal due to various problems. The band’s reactivation came suddenly and put me out of my thoughts. Now the journey starts once again.

Sorrows Path are active again and the best way to represent their music to the audience after their re-birth is to remaster both tapes and to turn all this stuff (6 tracks – 40 minutes of music) into a brilliant remastered CD including the single track of their promo tape and the five tracks of their demo. What the listener gets here is a great piece of tragic, melodic, technical doom metal in complex and sometimes progressive forms. I know that the last term does not fit in a doom metal release but how can you describe all those many different riffs, melodic bridges and musical changes that appear in the same song?

The riffs of Sorrows Path are characteristic, borrowing something from the strength of classic heavy metal and re-presented in doomy forms; they have something really personal. In addition to the strong riffs the lead guitar parts play a very important role in Sorrows Path music. The unstoppable lead guitar themes create almost every part of the songs with additional melodies and solos. If you need a great example of all these then listen the opening track of this CD called 'No Possibility' (originally released as the only track on the 'Promo Tape 96'.

It is one of the very few times that I draw attention to a real technical bass and drum rhythm section in a doom metal band. The bass lines, remaining melodic, give an ideal rhythmic base together with the drums that emphasise the breaks, double bass fills and little drumming crescendos in the correct parts of the songs. Ok, now I have to refer to the vocals right? If I could only convey through my written lines the way I felt when I first heard the very first vocal lines of 'No Possibility' I would be very happy. But I know this is impossible. His tragic, deep and characterising vocals, especially in this part, and the way their haunted melody fits with the specific riff that is played makes them difficult to describe. An entrance into tragedy, an entrance into a nightmare? No words left...

If you have enjoyed the melodic parts of the first song executed by clean guitar then you will enjoy the intro to the second song called 'Flower', where a nice melodic theme in clean guitar is guided by a nice lead guitar theme and drives the listener to the first main riff. In this I notice some keyboards –actually the sound of a violin provided by synthesizer- to create some atmosphere, something that can be noticed in other songs as well. Again the deep vocal lines are creating mournful melodies narrating their stories. Keep your soul open for this voice... The riffs are changing again and the drums are filling the rhythm background with nice double bass drumming. The vocals become darker and at about the fifth minute of the song new riffs are coming into the foreground in a more classic metal way and a lead guitar solo electrifies the atmosphere.

'Prince of the Night' could probably be my favourite tune from this release –together with 'No Possibility', but still it is hard to choose, sorry. It is a faster – a little bit more than mid-tempo - song with the most classic metal riffs around. The keyboards/violin fit in perfectly with the main vocal lines, bringing the tragedy onto the first level. Hail to the Prince of the Night.

'True Hope' begins with a heavy as hell doom metal riff strengthened by a nice lead and some keyboards. The riffs are its most characteristic feature. A slow piece of doom metal art. The drumming is perfect and heavy; strengthening the main riffs. The vocals are still exploring new worlds of melody in every single line.

What follows is the dark intro of 'Land of Illusions (CHOPAR)' with the bass lines driving it to an electric riff break complemented by a nice lead guitar theme for one more time. The vocals are reminiscent –as far as their melodies go- of the first era of Solitude Aeturnus. There's also some narrative parts. Melodic clean guitar themes -together with background keyboards- follow and a voice that becomes even more tragic. The storm after the calm comes with the following riff (at about the forth minute of the song) together with the vocal crescendo. The song continues with some of the pre-mentioned themes.

'Sorrow’s Path' is the ideal epilogue for this release. The violin creates the tragic melodies this time. Vocals from the depths of darkness and screams... Can you hear them? Let them guide you to the Sorrows Path. Drums and guitars are getting wilder... Fading to oblivion... Probably the most “haunting” song on this release.

The stuff included on this CD has originally been released ten years ago as I mentioned before, but now is possibly the ideal time for this stuff to be exposed to a wider audience as it will be available on CD for the first time. The production sounds good, considering that the recordings are a decade old, but the remastering really make them sound better.

Rounding up my review I will say that Sorrows Path is not for all those who look for their daily 3 minute “sorrowful” tunes just after their afternoon coffee (you know who you are, little goths). Here we have some great pieces of music that become more complex with time and need some good listening in order to flow inside you. Sit down, close your eyes and let the songs speak to you. Everyone that likes to explore new musical worlds deserves it. Finally, yes, this is doom metal for sure; played with soul, strength and passion. I just can't wait to listen to their new songs. Let's walk the Path of Sorrow, once again...

Ps. The CD will be released soon the final artwork is still not available.

Contact: sorrowspathmusic@yahoo.gr

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. No Possibility **
2. Flower *
3. Prince of the Night *
4. True Hope *
5. Land of Illusions (CHOPAR) *
6. Sorrow's Path *

* From the 'Demo Tape '95'.
** From the 'Promo Tape '96'.

Duration : Approx. 40 minutes.

Visit the Sorrows Path bandpage.

Reviewed on ??-??-???? by Chris Papadakis
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