Amorphis - Slient Waters (Nuclear Blast Records) - Back
Finland’s Amorphis have had an interesting career. After starting out as a standard Death Metal band with a few melodic touches on 1993's "Karelian Isthmus", Amorphis moved on to help pioneer the use of melody, clean vocals and folk elements in death metal with the "Tales from the Thousand Lakes" and "Elegy" albums. Amorphis eventually settled in as something of an atmospheric prog. rock band for the trio of albums that followed "Elegy". 2005's “Eclipse” album welcomed new vocalist Tomi Joutsen, and marked a return to the bands more aggressive roots. Their new album "Slient Waters" sees the band picking up where "Eclipse" left off, incorporating bits of all of the bands eras to form a cohesive sound.

"Silent Waters" is near flawless combination of everything that Amorphis has done in the past. Heavier tracks such as “A Servant” and “Towards and Against” strongly recall the "Tales from the Thousand Lakes" album, featuring riffs that are both melodic and heavy along with a big dose of death vocals. These are balanced by cleaner tracks such as “Her Alone” and “Enigma,” devoid of death metal elements, and showcasing some of the bands folk influence. The bulk of "Silent Waters" falls in between these two extremes, but all of these diverse elements are used to good effect throughout the album.

The production has a warm and organic feel, allowing all of the instruments to be heard without over powering each other. Overall this is a great album that successfully melds many different ideas into a cohesive package. "Eclipse" hinted at this, but "Silent Waters" is a more confident and balanced sounding album. You can tell that the band has hit their stride with the new line up. Tomi Jutsen seems to be a perfect fit for Amorphis, his death vocals are powerful and convincing and his clean voice is a strong mid range that fits the bands style like a glove.

Amorphis are a band who are aptly named, ever changing and difficult to categorize. After years of change and experimentation the band appears to be settling in to a groove, finding ways to blend styles within albums rather than changing from album to album. "Silent Waters" is a great album full of powerful and interesting songs. A job well done.

Rating:
89

Reviewed By: Garett F.