Leaves' Eyes - Legend land (EP) 3/5

Reviewed: 8-11-06


1. Legend land
2. Skraelings
3. Viking's word
4. The crossing
5. Lyset
6. Legend land (extended version)

When I was initially introduced to this band, after having read so many favorable reviews, my secret temptation cajoled me to make haste to the now defunct Media Play, in order to seize my own forlorn copy of their debut 'Lovelorn'. I was seriously disappointed, with the ocean sway of this meloncholic tale of the sea, made with very little emotion or enduring quality. It was my dream upon buying this CD to recapture the classic Theatre of Tragedy trappings. Once their sophomore outing became available, I refused to purchase it after my utter frustration with their debut. However, my one good friend took a chance and was rather pleased with his gambol. He played it for me, and finally after many skeptical listens, I really began to enjoy it.

When I heard that Leaves' Eyes were being entered into the Guinness Book of World Records earlier this summer for having successfully signed the most copies of their latest EP in such a short amount of time, for the European market; my interest became sparked as I once again perused very positive press. No longer thwarted by the thorns of a mourning trellis, or past misseri, I'm pleased to pronounce the solemn marriage of serious talent and love torn storytelling.

This site is not known for covering EP's, so I have established a new precedent, just as this band has been cautiously crossing over into the new found land of Viking territory, telling the vinland saga of Erik the Red through Leif's eyes. The music has manifested magnificently, the production value has increased tremendously. Liv Kristine has once again finally found her classic vocal verisimilitude, while life partner Alex Krull castigates the competition with his atrocity for werk, hating hallucinations and longing for death mettle.

The CD commences with the title track and closes with a extended version of this epic elegy. The Viking world is envisioned in the somber melodies redounding with an affectatious shimmer of incandescence. The female nightingale whispers live, and let Liv demonstrate her octave oscillations in a manner similar to classic Theatre of Tragedy releases, like her perfomance on 'Aegis'. Skullduggery scripts like "Skraelings" places the listener in the enchanted forest of thieves and cunning linguistic knavery with its keyboard opening and musical filaments of finesse similar to Fintroll. "Viking's word" and "The crossing" both echo the slow epic folk like features of a Norwegian love song with their eloquent choruses creating clandestine honour and homage for these ancient merchants of malice. The mandolin arrangements on "Lyset" listlessly lure the listener into a history of violence; while still allaying all concerns for carnage.

If this return to life EP is formally any indication of what will be on the forthcoming CD, I leave all my past pessimystic pride behind, and anticipate their next quiescent quiddity with ne'er a quixotic quiver.




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