Sirenia – Dim Days of Dolor (Review)

SireniaThis is the eighth album from Norwegian symphonic/Gothic metallers Sirenia.

After being around for a good 15 years now, Sirenia know a thing or two about the style they play. Largely held in high regard for their symphonic/Gothic metal, they’re back once more with what is, I think, one of their best albums.

As soon as the first track, Goddess of the Sea, starts the album off, Sirenia firmly stake their claim to the grandiose, bombastic, operatic sound that their fans will no doubt lap up. And rightly so; as the album progresses it reveals itself to be a very enjoyable fusion of epic pomp and molten melodic metal.

The songs are well-written and very catchy. You feel like you know the songs, (up to a point), even on first listen, and the more you delve into Dim Days of Dolor the more its charms reveal themselves.

The guitars have a nicely weighty presence, which is always a great thing to hear for a release of this type, as all too often the guitars tend to play a back seat to everything else that’s going on. This is not the case on Dim Days of Dolor, where the guitars are decently heavy.

A big draw of music like this is the singer. This is Sirenia’s first album with their new operatically trained vocalist, (although she’s actually been a member of the Sirenia choir for over a decade). She has a ludicrously strong, powerful and infectious voice. She clearly knows how to use her vocal talents well and is definitely the focal point of the bright and melodic metal on this album. She’s ably backed up by operatic choirs, male cleans and sharp screams. All-in-all the album has a strong vocal package with a fair amount of variety alongside their talented main singer.

I very much enjoyed this. It’s big, bold, brash and larger-than-life symphonic metal that’s so professionally and slickly delivered that unless you’re allergic to the style it’s really easy to take to.

This is the musical equivalent of a rich, sumptuous, filling, textured and tasty meal.

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