Monday, 1 June 2015

Mist - Inan' (2015) / 74%

Cerulean doom

The Slovenian troop is one of the up and coming bands in the doom world, not only they took the Girlschool approach (all girl band!) but they’re from a small European country that isn’t quite known for its metal scene. Let’s compare the 2 million people country with one of its Nordic counterparts, Finland (about 5 million people). Slovenia has exactly 234 bands archived on the Encyclopedia while has more than 3000! It’s fun to see metal scenes develop like the Indian doom scene with Bevar Sea or Shepherd and maybe Mist can help develop the Slovenian one.

Inan’ follows the two track demo released in 2013 and the new extended play shows an improved (on all front) version of the band. The addition of lead guitarist Blaž Tanšek (damn, these names are cool) reinforces the band. Still, it’s a combo breaker, he’s now the only man in Mist, it’s opposite day in metal! Usually, IF there’s a woman, she’s alone and kept in stereotypical roles (keyboards, vocals) and it’s awesome that we’re really seeing some improvements on this front.

Musically, Mist doesn’t disappoint at all. Their blend of fast paced traditional doom metal can recall the glory days of Pentagram and a more streamlined, flute and keyboard less Blood Ceremony. Nina’s vocals are powerful and entrancing, she’s the soul of the band and she shines on tracks like “Frozen Velvet”, an intricate slower and longer number. The clean sung vocals have this classic rock vibe reminding me of Coven and Heart (Ann Wilson rocks!). They’re haunting, romantic and fits the music like a charm. Mix this with the doom metal riffs and you have an enjoyable release.

The dual guitar is nice and the rhythm guitar gives the lead guitarist its place while keeping the heaviness and groove alive. The almost twenty minutes extended play is a bit on the safe side but it’s fun and well written doom with hooks. I feel they have the potential to be something more epic, something more grandiose. There’s these semi-operatic vocals that could be pushed further and they seem to have the songwriting chops to achieve a higher degree of doom greatness.

The band has been a bit slow to release their music and there’s not a lot of it out there yet. This EP is including “Phobia”, one of the two tracks appearing on their debut demo is closing Inan’. I think they could be ready to unleash a full length album but not everything is memorable here and the musicianship could be a bit tighter and heavier (excluding the guitars). I think they’re still developing their sound and we could be destined from very good music from these women (and this man!).

They simply don’t have the personality and aura (yet!) of Mansion who still is the best “mum doom” band (accessible female fronted traditional doom) band around and I’m impatiently expecting their full length. Nevertheless, it’s a pretty good release that fans of the current wave of traditional doom should check out. They certainly know how to present themselves (this cover art is superb) and they have the music and potential to back it up.

Originally written for The Metal Observer

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