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My Lament : Broken Leaf

My Lament... Ok, this band reminds me something... Let's see... My Dying Bride, My Shameful, My Silent Wake, My Life Despair, and, yes, even My Souls Lament! At first glance, it starts bad for the Belgian band. My Lament does not seem to value originality. Like many other Doom bands, they resort to the first person. My, my, my, all this is mine, it's all me. Oh, all right. Let's admit that Doom is also an introspective genre, a intimate vehicle to navigate by sight in one's own psyche, a personal genre, egotistical. My Lament has its reasons, to which I subscribe. The hackneyed name is justified but, what about the music?

Hackneyed as well, I'm afraid... My Lament sails in well known waters, even a bit polluted by a long tradition. My Dying Bride, Paradise Lost, Mourning Beloveth, and Saturnus feed the sound of the Belgians to the point of phagocytosing their inspiration. More than once, you meditatively scratch your chin, murmuring "I heard that somewhere". Often, you hear resurgences, too familiar reminiscences of other discs, other bands, big or small.

My Lament, however, write good songs, plays them well, with the right tone, with the right sense of rhythm; it's overwhelming and light, fluid and thoughtful, solemn and melancholic. Well, all right, you can't escape these qualificatives, they are useful whenever you have to compose the indenti-kit of the typical Death Doom band. That's what My Lament is. Simply bend down, you can pick them up easily. But! The less interesting ones run down between your fingers. And in the middle of the palm remain just a few who make noise and tickle your ear. That is where My Lament lie, their music beating with a sincere vibrating pulse you can't deny.

The production is fat, the sound very meaty, perhaps too much, it lacks a little subtlety. The accelerations are well led by the drums that run like a wild horse through the open plains of Central Asia (or elsewhere). A dry wind blows on the Death Doom of My Lament, the warm breath of painful memories: it is heavy and nostalgic, the bass-deep echoes enrich the spleen of the band's music. The guitars' peculiar sound helps to give the band its most personal features: their acid and moving tessitura that brings a sad and epic touch. The growls are excellent, very deep, but the singer shows a maddening habit: he more than once speak to us! Whenever this happens, I always find it quite ridiculous and cheap. These recitations are unnecessary and don't help the tragic perspectives the band takes the time to carefully build.

Overall, I think the album lacks darkness, they have to make choices: it isn't really sad / melodic nor sufficiently abrasive / aggressive / black. The last track, 'Vilest Of Men', exudes the kind of atmosphere that I would have wished to hear more often on this disc: It begins with a furious and glorious tone and goes on through more interesting light changes before going back to the former apocalyptic pattern, this is excellent!

'Broken Leaf' is a good album, and it is a very good summary. An clever outline of the intentions of the genre. My Lament has talent, that's for sure , they just have to throw the map overboard and sail their own route. I wish them good wind!

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Broken Leaf (intro)
2. Shepherd Of Sorrow
3. Silent Nights
4. My Damnation Deep
5. The Soilseeker
6. Her Dark Smile
7. The Burden Of Doubt
8. Vilest Of Men

Duration : Approx. 55 minutes.

Visit the My Lament bandpage.

Reviewed on 08-11-2009 by Bertrand marchal
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