Words by Tina Summers
Hailing from the town of Kotka on the coast of Finland, the 6 piece Marianas Rest were founded in 2013. ‘Fata Morgana’ is their third album release completing the trilogy and will be distributed on the infamous Napalm Records. Following on from their previous creations of ‘Horror Vacui’ (2016) amd ‘Ruins’ (2019) this latest release is doom laden atmospheric death metal – just the way I like it!
I was particularly excited upon receiving this review, as this to me is the one of my favourite styles of Death Metal, as the dark little swampy inside me likes to be carried on a journey & to be washed up in the soundscape. This is like one of those books you cannot put down, as you get transported to another place, a gloomy snow laden place with visions of heartache & resurrection from the darkness.
Produced and mixed by Teemu Aalto (Insomnium, Omnium Gatherum) and Marianas Rest, at Teemu Aalto Music Productions and mastered by Svante Forsbäck at Chartmakers, the 8 track melodic album has excellent production quality, which enriches the melodic tapestry to create incredible moodiness.
Beginning track Sacrifical sets the tone, followed by the first single released off the album Glow From the Edge which showcases vocalist Jaakko Mäntymaa haunting and incredible scream, alongside Omnium Gatherum’s Aapo Koivisto on keys we are off on our journey. The rest of the line up consists of Nico Mänttäri – guitar, Harri Sunila – guitar, Niko Lindman – bass, Nico Heininen – drums, you can really feel the fullness of sound from all the members. The clip for the first single released Glow From the Edge.
The lyrical content is poignant, albeit dark, to show another fine example of the depth of emotion within this album – “I wish I could explain just how it feels, To know what I know now, to see what I have to see now, And to do it all again and again, Powerless, part of an all consuming cycle in the end we all – Fall” In an interview with the singer and guitarist they state they are not melancholic people but the band is like a ventilation for them to release the emotions & to help them find balance in their lives. Inspiration for this album was Antarctica and blizzards states vocalist and lyricist Jaakko Mäntymaa – that he has to have inspiration and focus from his own experiences in life, he states he can’t just create lyrics from fantasy, it has to be drawn from within himself and his life experiences, to match the melody and mood of the song.
The next track Pointless Tale continues on the melancholy vein, as the band states it’s a paradox, “inviting the listeners to a disturbing yet beautiful place, welcoming yet haunting & hopeless.” This sums it up – it is all about creating the mood & their connection to their country, the cold vastness. Themes of isolation, emotional collapse and the rising from the ashes of that state.
A standout track for me is the album title Fata Morgana, some could say a love song or a song of regret? “Nothing would ever please me as to be there for you Nothing would ever heal me but to watch the world burn down with you.”
Guest appearances on the album are Timo Virkkala, who creates more atmosphere with his cello and backing vocals from Lindsay Matheson/Schoolcraft (ex-Cradle Of Filth).
A stunning work of art, I do highly recommend you give it a listen. You can Pre order here.
And with the choice of 2LP Gatefold on black and white marbled vinyl, 2LP Black, CD Digipak and Digital Album. Whatever your preference I am sure you won’t be disappointed. The amazing photography for the album was contributed by Norwegian photographer Kjetil Karlsen. Follow his work here.
2. Glow From the Edge
3. Pointless Tale
4. The Weight
6. Fata Morgana
7. Advent of Nihilism
8. South of Vostok
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Thanks to Maric Media