When Synestesia’s Feeniks dropped earlier this year I hadn’t so much as heard of this band--let alone have been able to predict how much I would enjoy this album.Though the lyrics of this album are in Finnish, I am told it is a concept record about a man unhappy with himself who decided to recreate himself from the ashes of his old self. Fenniks, Finnish for Phoenix, wastes absolutely no time getting started. It's fast and pounding, yet melodic and approachable. Vocalist, Eero Kuusisto fits the band perfectly. Whether he is softly crooning or growling with such ferocity, he seems to put many vocalists to shame. And all the while, he takes deep, pronounced breaths almost to remind the listener that what you hear is a real person. Guitarists Jonne-Pekka and Kalle do with their axes as Eero does with his voice. Sweeping melodies quickly give way to blistering riffs and screaming solos; and as fast as they came, they leave the listener catching their breath while they play acoustic interludes. Bassist and drummer, Eero Hammais and Timo Harju respectively, execute the percussion end of things brilliantly with tightness and precision. Throughout the album there are accents of soft whispers, female vocals and violins, never overdone that make this album a true standout. Always a sucker for concept albums- my only complaint is with myself not knowing the Finnish language to translate the narrative. In closing, I feel I should give hails to ‘dalton55’ a friend on last.fm that turned me on to this album. Fenniks is a well-rounded, expertly executed album and a strong contender in the melo-death division for Album of the Year. Standout tracks: Numeni On Fenniks Paatos Tuli Palkoon
Chief Editor and Writer for Metal CallOut. Favorite sub genre of heavy metal includes Black, Death, Folk and Traditional. Josh can be found at Google+.