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SATURNUS: Veronika Decides To Die

Choice Of The Month May 2006



SATURNUS: Veronika Decides To Die 2006-05-22 melodic doom metal
Label /
Playing Time Cat. N°
59:19 Firecd033
Review by / Translated by Rating
Vera - Jany / Danny 9,5/10
nederlands Review

Drop everything and run along to the nearest record store, for the new Saturnus is out! I did not dare to hope for that, because after the release of their masterpiece ‘Martyre’ in 2000 - which put me in a state of euphoria too - three of their core members left the band and the end appeared to be in sight for the eminent doom band of Denmark. In 2002 ‘Star Rover’ was released from the new project The Loveless, but this gothic trip caused little fuss in history. Recommended on the other hand is the neo folk outfit Of The Wand And The Moon, in which one can find three ex members of the former Saturnus.

But nothing is better than Saturnus itself of course! Three members of the old line-up and three new musicians strike back heavily, six years after the previous album, and the good news is that almost nothing has changed in the music of Saturnus. This band still stands at a lonely high quality level. Melancholy and sadness get a grip on your heart as a chill hand of despair when you listen to this, while the music yet has an intense warmth and depth. Wavering piano notes pass into meandering guitars, vocals are sad spoken poetry for a moment, then low grunts that strengthen the monumental, regal riffs. It is rather seldom to find a large number of melodic soloing on a doom album, but this album is blessed with lashings of them. It surely contributes to the magic of this one hour majestic doom metal. Some interludes reminded me a bit of the ‘Eternity’ album of Anathema, but also those who cherish My Dying Bride, Novembers Doom or Mourning Beloveth will truly enjoy this. We meet with some famous names regarding the production and artwork. The first was done by Flemming Rasmussen, the second was in the hands of the renowned Travis Smith.

In more up tempo songs like ‘Pretend’ and ‘To The Dreams’ the gravel-throated vocals of Thomas AG Jensen are a bit Alastis and Crematory allied. The captivating ‘Descending’ has a guest appearance of Michael Denner (Mercyful Fate, Force Of Evil) and his guitar solo brought tears in my eyes. But every song is such a perfect reflection of inner feelings such as sorrow and desire that you disappear out of this world for a while to be lead away by the enthralling melodies of Saturnus! Most probably I am dealing here with my album of the year 2006!

Miracles still exist. This album caught my attention from the very start. The sounds evoke an atmosphere, which you can’t put aside. Most of the time, I have a problem with this style of music, especially when we’re dealing with grunts. But because of my critical opinion, it’s easier to separate the good from the bad. This is doom as doom was intended to sound. You wonder where the difference lies? Well, that’s what I want to explain to you in the rest of this review.

The deep sadness which you can find on this album awakens a large amount of melancholy, enough to taste the tears it causes. This ‘Veronika Decides To Die’ knows how to put enough variation in the album. The grunts are present, but not all of the time. The switch between the grunts and the plain vocals is what makes the difference for this CD. The lyrics, which are almost poems, deliver some moments of peace and remorse, needed to make it a good doom album.
But the difference is also made by the guitar parts, interlaced in perfect amounts through the tracks. The slow rhythm guitars are perfectly balanced with very melodic riffs and solos of super quality. You can, of course, compare with other albums, but, believe me; this CD will be worshipped too, in the future. The absolute highlight is, without any doubt “Descending”, especially for the great guitars. Some solos are more Pink Floyd than the contemporary Gilmour. Michael Denner (Mercyful Fate, Force of Evil) is giving a helping hand to accomplish this sound.
The tension that’s been built up on every song is really awesome. Which influences can be found? The most important reference must be the ‘old’ Anathema (‘Eternity’). But doom lovers who like My Dying Bride will certainly appreciate the atmosphere on this album.

The masterpiece, presented here by Saturnus, reaches the limits of human sadness. Beyond that, everything in your environment would have been swallowed by an indefinable black hole. There is no other way to escape from this earthly melancholy but buying this ‘Veronika Decides To Die’!


Thomas - vocals
Tais - guitar
Peter - guitar
Anders - keyboards
Lennart - bass
Nikolaj - drums
I Long
Rain Wash Me
All Alone
Embraced By Darkness
To The Dreams
Murky Waters
Veronika Decides to Die (Firebox Records, 2006)
Martyre (Euphonious Records, 2000)
For the Loveless Lonely Nights (Euphonious Records, 1998)
Paradise Belongs to You (Euphonious Records, 1997)

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Last updated: 11/05/2006 .
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