Frowning - Funeral Impressions (CD)

funeral doom, Solitude Productions, Solitude Productions
400.00 Р

CD

Price in points: 800 points
SP. 095-14 x
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The long-awaited full-length album by the German project which had time to prove itself by participating in a split-album as a powerful and interesting example of funeral doom death metal. Long tracks, avoiding the monotony and repetition, consistently reveal all the technical abilities of the musician who tried to reveal himself not only as a professional artist, but also as a talented composer and a sensual melodist. However, the latter did not prevent «Funeral Impressions» from becoming an example of dark, hopeless and heavy metal.

Tracklist:
1 Intro 1:24
2 Obsessed 8:45
3 Receive My Tears 9:03
4 Day In Black 7:03
5 Sleep Eternally 8:24
6 Murdered By Grief 15:51
7 A Way Into Relief 12:01

Artist:
Frowning
Artist Country:
Germany
Album Year:
2014
Title:
Funeral Impressions
Style:
funeral doom
Format:
CD
Type:
CD Album
Package:
Jewel Case
Label:
Solitude Productions
Cat No:
SP. 095-14
Release Year:
2014
Barcode:
4 627080 610729
Country Of Manufacture:
USA, Canada & Europe
Review
Zwaremetalen
6.5/10
20.06.2015

Frowning is een éénmansproject uit Duitsland waarvan dit de eerste langspeler is. Op het Russische label Solitude Productions mag het al eigenlijk geen verrassing meer zijn welke muziekstroming we hier te pakken hebben. Voor diegenen die nog geen idee hebben, lees rustig verder.

Frowning maakt, net als bekendere labelbroeder EA, doom metal en in dit geval funeral doom. Een kort intro vormt de opmaat voor zes lange nummers die bij elkaar de zestig minuten grens passeren. Treurige en lang uitgesponnen melodielijnen vormen de basis die sfeervol wordt ondersteund door wat toetsen hier en daar. De ritmesectie ploegt langzaam voort zonder al teveel speelse fills en doet haar werk verder sober. Kortom het beproefde recept zonder ruimte voor echte verrassingen voorzien van een standaard grunt. Qua structuur en atmosfeer zit het allemaal wel snor, de leegte en het verlies is duidelijk aanwezig hoewel het mij hier en daar wat teveel van hetzelfde is en er geen tracks duidelijk uitspringen.

Over het algemeen is funeral doom geen lichte kost maar ik verwacht in de zwaarte van de nummers toch wat meer mistroostige melodieën die blijven hangen. Dat is hier helaas niet het geval en Frowning ontstijgt voorlopig de middelmaat wat mij betreft nog niet.

Author: Wouter Kooy
Review
Hell-is-Open
7/10
04.01.2015

Ganz passend das Frowning sich vor diesem Album eine Split EP mit Aphonic Threnody teilten, denn hier kann man schon von Genrebrüdern sprechen. Somit hat die Split Sinn ergeben. Und fast zeitgleich zu AT`s neuer Scheibe wuchten auch Frowning einen neuen Brocken aufs Parkett, ihren ersten Longplayer wenn ich richtig informiert bin. Beziehungsweise seinen ersten Longplayer, den Frowning ist die Ein Mann Einheit von Val Atra Niteris

Author: Alucard
Review
Atmosfear Magazine №15
7/10

Очередной one-man проект, на этот раз из Германии. Val Atra Niteris (также участник HEIMLEIDEN и HOLLENSTURM) записал в одиночку свой дебютный альбом в стиле funeral doom metal, который в итоге увидел свет стараниями российского лейбла Solitude. Видимо трудно в Германии сейчас подписать приличный контракт с каким-нибудь местным лейблом, тем более, когда ты исполняешь такую некоммерческую музыку. Что ж, порадуемся за немца, что его старания хоть не прошли даром, хотя не думаю, что его диски будут разгребать как горячие пирожки. Не то чтобы материал плохой или скучный, просто ничего нового вы тут не услышите. Впрочем не думаю, что для любителей стиля это станет препятствием для того чтобы приобрести данный релиз.

Author: CS
Review
Funeral Wedding
5/5

Lançado no último mês do ano passado, este álbum do Frowning pode ser resumido em apenas uma palavra: esmagador.

Após uma pequena “Intro” de teclado, lembrando em muito as bandas de Death/Doom dos anos 90, dando um clima sorumbático para os primeiros acordes de “Obsessed”. A citada faixa nos apresenta um Funeral Doom repleto de melodias depressivas e uma densa atmosfera que cerca cada andamento da faixa. O modo que é tocado os acordes, me trouxe a lembrança o fabuloso Doom:vs da época de seu debut.

Seguindo adiante temos uma das melhores músicas do cd, “Receive my Tears”. É uma faixa relativamente longa e muito bela, com um ar pesado e por vezes chega a ser difícil respirar, ainda mais se escutado nos fones de ouvido.

“Day in Black” por incrível que pareça, é uma faixa mais “animada” e não tão sorumbática quanto as faixas anteriores.

“Sleep Eternally” segue na mesma vibe da faixa de abertura. Sentimos aqui a mesma necessidade de isolamento e curtir a densa atmosfera que cerca os acordes melancólicos.

“Murdered by Grief” é a maior faixa do disco, com pouco mais de 15 minutos. E já nas primeiras batidas de bateria temos a noção que esta será uma faixa longa e dolorida para o ouvinte. Após uma pequena pausa, a sonoridade torna-se mais lenta, lê-se, quase parando. A medida que a faixa avança, temos uma pequena alternância em sua melodia, e aqui novamente me traz a mente o já citado Doom:vs.

Temos novamente uma pequena pausa e aqui o baixo se faz presente e nos traz um último suspiro antes de entrar em estado catatônico.

Para encerrar e nos trazer a óbito “A Way into Relief”. É novamente uma faixa longa, com apenas 12 minutos e serve como um alento após ter passado por uma hora de depressão intensa.
Review
Deadly Storm
16.02.2015

Mrtvola, zamrzlá kousek od lesní cesty. Střeva, rozlezlá mezi krystalky ledu. Okolo se vznáší pachuť strachu a ozvěna posledního výkřiku. Když sem ten nebožák vyrazil, chtěl se jen projít na zimním větru a zavzpomínat na léto. Špatná konstelace hvězd na špatném místě. V záloze čekající vrah, vzrušený lovem. Následovalo leknutí, hrdelní jekot a nevěřícný pohled. Poslední myšlenky člověka před smrtí patřila vzpomínkám na blízké. Opuštěné tělo jakoby žalovalo. Pokud byste zahlédli celou scenérii z letadla, zaujalo by vás určitě rozložení končetin. Ty vytvářejí pentagram. Není to samozřejmě náhoda. Nikdo se nikdy nedozví, odkud vrah vzešel. Budou se jen vyprávět neuvěřitelné zkazky o tom, že někdo spatřil v době vraždy podivné světlo, záblesk. Také se prý vzduchem vznášely skoro až nehybné tóny funeral doomových FROWNING. Ty, spolu s těžko uchopitelným smutkem, dotvářely ponurou atmosféru místa, skoro až v umělecké dílo. Chlad, samota, křišťálově zmrzlé kapky ledu na očních víčkách. Krutost zimní přírody. Takové obrazy se mi míhají před očima, když se ploužím mezi dlouhými skladbami německých FROWNING.

Ty tvoří jediná osoba, která si říká Val Atra Niteris. A i když bývám k podobným sólo projektům povětšinou skeptický, tady jsem nenašel žádnou slabinu. Dokonce i bicí, mnohdy řešené pomocí různých programů, zde znějí, jak mají. Co si ale vyloženě užívám, tak jsou vokály. Ty jsou velmi naléhavé, uvěřitelné a sednou k té rozvláčné muzice velmi dobře. Samozřejmě, mnohým může vadit přílišná délka skladeb, až moc rozmáchlé kompozice, ale uvědomme si, že hlavním stylem, který je předkládán, je funeral doom metal. A v něm se na nějakou tu minutu nehledí (smích). Deska vyšla u ruských Solitude Productions. Tento label se na podobné choré záležitosti zaměřuje a jejich vydavatelské počiny bývají v daném oboru skvosty. Tedy co jsem se měl zatím možnost setkat.

Texty, pojednávající o smrti, sebevražedných sklonech a záhrobních záležitostech jsou propracované a mají určitě co říct. CD bych nedoporučoval slabším jedincům. Přeci jen, některé pasáže jsou natolik smutné a niterně pojaté, že by mohly u někoho navodit až depresivní stavy. Deathový murmur, který nad vším vévodí, jako Kristus na kříži nad hřbitovem, všemu dodává ještě větší kus smutku. Pomalu našlapujete po pečlivě uhrabaných cestičkách mezi hroby. Už dávno ani netušíte, proč jste vlastně začali k tomuhle náhrobku chodit. Možná je společným jmenovatelem to, že jste kdysi nalezli zde odpočívající tělo na zamrzlé pěšině uprostřed lesů. Chodíte sem stejně jen vy a pak někdo druhý, po kterém zůstávají ve vzduchu jen samé černé zbytky svědomí. FROWNING moc dobře vědí, jak veškerou náladu, která se vznáší všude kolem zabalit do mrtvolné atmosféry. Přitom se jedná teprve o první desku (ještě mají na kontě split s APHONIC THRENODY - 2014). Možná právě proto, ta zásada o prvních albech, která jsou sice mnohdy lehce neumělá, ale o to víc syrová a uvěřitelná, platí na „Funeral Impressions“ dvojnásob.

Hodina nepřetržitého umírání a smutku bude pro mnohé asi už dlouhá. Na podobná CD musí být určitě nálada a chuť. Mně se osvědčily poslechy při toulkách zimní krajinou, kdy vám zalézá mráz pod rukávy a ochlazuje vaše tělo až někam ke hranici snesitelnosti. Na horách pak, při zdolání vrcholku a vystoupání na rozhlednu se nesly skladby do krajiny lehce a samozřejmě, jakoby do zasněžených lesů a plání patřily odnepaměti. Nevím, jak se na tuhle desku budou tvářit znalci v oboru, ale mě jako občasného návštěvníka v doomových hájích přesvědčila, zasáhla mě a byla mi věrným průvodcem. Bylo vždy moc příjemné se odpoutat od stereotypu běžných dní, přepnout mozek do „režimu příroda“ a jen se tak procházet. Vždycky tvrdím, že nejdůležitější bývá si najít k deskám cestu, snažit se je pochopit a pak je buď člověk odměněn a nebo zůstává netknutý. Na „Funeral Impressions“ je cesta vydlážděna vzpomínkami na zapadající slunce, na chladné mrznoucí podvečery, na pomalu unikající život. Funeral doomová procházka zemí ledu a smutku.

Author: Jakub Asphyx
Review
Metal Temple
7/10
22.01.2015

Whether you’re feeling down, upset, or simply want some heavy music without the high-speed bombast of most Extreme Metal, FROWNING have you covered with their debut album, “Funeral Impressions”. A solo project created by German musician Val Atra Niteris, FROWNING was formed in 2011 and contributed to a split-EP with APHONIC THRENODY earlier this year.

Slow, lurching Doom is the name of the game here, and FROWNING provide plenty of it, with seven songs stretching out to slightly over an hour in length. “Funeral Impressions” exudes feelings of despair and hopelessness, and the gloomy clean guitar lines that open first song “Obsessed” set the tone for the album. There are times where the band’s melancholy borders on nihilistic in manner and sound, though there is still a noticeable melodic element that keeps things feeling human enough throughout. In addition, the instruments are supplemented with a handful of subtle effects that give the music a fuller, all-encompassing sound. Niteris’s growls are pretty standard fare for this sort of music, but the lyrics to each song are pretty well thought out and couldn’t fit better with the music they were written for, each song being a clinic on suffering, pain, and loss.

Where “Obsessed” works as something of a primer, “Receive My Tears” ups the ante with an even more formidable, more visceral display of emotion with its echoing atmospheric effects and somber guitar harmonies amidst crushing power chords and Niteris’s bitter lamentations. “Day In Black” continues along the same path, and is a little more direct in its approach. “Sleep Eternally” feels a more sad than bleak musically, but it’s just as resigned to misery as the rest of the album.

My criticisms of this album are few, as it is a solid work overall. Sometimes, I felt like things got a little repetitive, even for this kind of music, and that for me usually means one of two things; either there needs to be a little more variety instrumentally, or the songs are too long. Personally, I lean towards the latter on this one. The certainty of dread is made all the more powerful by the consistency in the band’s musical approach, so they don’t really need to get too fancy or technical, but the same repetition can be somewhat draining at times. The songs work fine being long, but with an average length of just over ten minutes apiece, they could be trimmed a bit without sacrificing quality.

FROWNING deliver a good first effort with “Funeral Impressions”. The songs are well-crafted, the mood is dark and despondent, and the music is crushingly heavy. Fans of Funeral Doom and the like would do well to give it a listen.

Author: Andrew Sifari
Review
Metal Storm
6/10
16.01.2015

Quick! A gloomy, black and white album cover, and the album has "funeral" in its title. Can you guess the style?

If you guessed "power metal," we apologize, but the answer we were looking for in our Metal Categories For $2,000 was actually funeral doom. Val Atra Niteris, the mastermind behind the one man project of Frowning, chose to drop Funeral Impressions, the debut of his bleak and and brooding baby, late last year. As could be expected, the music is dark, melancholic, and mournful. With slow moving, heavy-as-Jupiter riffs, the occasionally more melodic moments that cast a heightened sense of sorrow onto the album, and Val's deep cookie monster growls, Funeral Impressions demonstrates exactly how funeral doom is typically composed quite well.

However, that's exactly the problem with the album: that it feels like too much of a replica of what has come before it. The music at work here is not necessarily bad, but for the most part it's nothing that hasn't already been done. Val has got the funeral doom formula pretty down to a T here, but there are very few senses of climax, and many of the riffs seem to lumber into monotony just for the sake of doing so, without ever really rewarding the listener with a higher enhancement of mood. Occasionally we see the use of some interesting choir-like effects here and there, but this something that has already been well-tackled by bands such as Skepticism and Elysian Blaze. And, quite frankly, they execute it a lot better. "Day In Black" is unquestionably the track with the most potential here, due to its impressive guitar lead (uncommon for the style) towards its end. Unfortunately however, this technique is pretty much confined purely to this track, and I for one really wish Val had worked more on it, for it could've given the guitar a much more interesting personality on the album when compared against the other instruments.

Considering that Frowning is a one man band, I found myself considerably disappointed with Funeral Impressions in the fact that Val doesn't appear to be utilizing the creative leeway that comes with one to its full potential. The music is thankfully not terrible, but it certainly isn't all that it could be either, and in a strange way that actually makes the album more disappointing, because rather than saying "it's shit" and leaving it at that, we're instead stuck with this sense of "it could've been so much better." For someone who can't get enough of funeral doom and its sinister and despairing atmospheres, I'd say go for it with this one. For those just getting into it, however, stick to the big names for now.

Author: Apothecary
Review
Darkview
8/10
23.12.2014

There is such a thing as laying it on too thick.

If it’s already quite clear you play funeral doom you might want to steer clear of any words like funeral , funerary or anything slightly undertakerish in your band name or album title, just to avoid people thinking nasty things about your creative mindset. Uninspired as the title of this debut may be, this German one man project does deliver a robust slab of doom death not unlike his fellow countrymen Ophis or Doomed. It also display a strong tendency towards funeral doom, especially Evoken’s ‘Embrace the Emptiness’ comes to mind. Had this come out 2 decades ago I would have probably showered it with accolades as the revelation of the year. With 2015 just around the corner, however, it might have a hard time to stand its ground. This holds particularly true with such a generic packaging, which is unfortunate, as it is really very well crafted and deserves to be heard.

Author: Samoht
Review
Iye Zine
8.5/10
19.12.2014

Dopo il riuscito split con gli Aphonic Threnody ritroviamo i Frowning, ovvero il progetto solista del musicista tedesco Val Atra Niteris, alle prese con la prima prova su lunga distanza.

Dopo aver ottenuto un deal prestigioso con quella che è ormai la casa madre del doom europeo, la label russa Solitude Productions, ed aver testato il responso degli appassionati con l’uscita in coabitazione con la band inglese autrice del recente “When Death Comes”, c’erano tutte le condizioni favorevoli perché questa opera prima potesse rivelarsi un nuovo importante tassello in ambito funeral.
Ebbene, si può affermare con certezza che le premesse sono state abbondantemente mantenute, visto che Funeral Impressions si dimostra una prova di grande spessore qualitativo nel corso della quale Val sciorina un’ora abbondante di suoni dolenti ma arricchiti da una connotazione melodica sempre in bella evidenza.
Se la traccia strumentale Day In Black é un episodio meraviglioso quanto parzialmente atipico, nel corso del quale il musicista tedesco esibisce le proprie pregevoli doti di chitarrista, il resto del lavoro si snoda sui ritmi rallentati allo spasimo che il genere impone, raccogliendo svariate influenze, quali soprattutto Mournful Congregation ed Evoken tra quelle dichiarate, oltre ad Ea e Eye Of Solitude per quanto concerne la ricerca della melodia all’interno di partiture gonfie di una malinconica oppressione.
Emblematico in tal senso un brano come Sleep Eternally, che brilla per una parte centrale realmente da brividi, con una chitarra che esprime un dolore quasi lancinante nel suo splendido sviluppo melodico.
E, in effetti, il lavoro prende ulteriormente quota da questo brano fino alla sua conclusione, con le più lunghe ed altrettanto valide Murdered by Grief e A Way into Relief, evidenziando una piacevole progressione che consente al’ascoltatore di mantenere sempre viva l’attenzione.
Frowning si conferma così un altro nome certo sul quale contare negli anni a venire: alla creatura di Val Atra Niteris non manca proprio nessuna delle peculiarità che rendono il funeral doom una delle più efficaci rappresentazioni artistiche del dolore e dell’angoscia destinate ad attanagliare, prima o poi, ogni essere umano.

Author: Stefano Cavanna
Review
Gorgers Metall
15.12.2014

Mitt fшrste mшte med tyske Val Atra Niteris, og hans enmannsband Frowning, var pе hans fшrste utgivelse, Of Graves, of Worms, and Epitaphs, en splitt med Aphonic Threnody. Begge disse er ute med sin fшrste fullengder i disse dager, og jeg kommer tilbake til sistnevnte.

Etter intro med koring og kirkeorgel venter blytung funeralsk misиre fra hjertet av dypet. La at hеp fordufte. Avgrunnen skal pе nytt еpne seg, og de rеtne og markspiste skal atter vandre i humus-dryssende horder. Mohahaha... Eller noe sеnt.

Vi snakker йn time funeral doom fordelt pе sju lеter som strekker seg fra 7 til 15 minutter. Som sist er det et velkjent rammeverk vi er vitne til. Men om spenningen ikke akkurat er til е ta og fшle pе er ihvertfall kvaliteten god. For е begynne med lyden: Dybden i lydbilet pе Of Graves... var sе god at det ikke var mye rom for forbedring. Lyden var imidlertid litt skarp. Lyden er like dyp og fin denne gang, og ogsе litt rundere i kantene. Behagelig, uten е bli for silkemyk. Musikken er fortsatt melodisk og stemningen naturligvis nedtrykt. Melodiene er vakre og sorgstemte, men som i det meste av nyere “melodisk metall”, uansett sjanger, savner jeg de virkelig minneverdige melodilinjene som trollbinder og aldri slipper taket. I knapt 16 minutter lange Murdered by Grief fеr vi bеde strykere, piano og koring, i йn passasje akkompagnert av regndrеper. Mer bruk av ulike instrumenter kunne шkt egenarten. Instrumenteringen er forшvrig stшdig utfшrt.

Konklusjon: Funeral Impressions har ikke de sterkeste mentale mothakene, og heller ingen musikalske overraskelser pе lur. Dette er dermed ikke noe obligatorisk innkjшp. De melodier man fеr servert, og den lyd de er pakket i, har likevel en sе avslappende og beroligende effekt pе sinnet at det veier opp for de mindre heldige aspektene. Fans av funeral sjekker selvfшlgelig ut denne.
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