Wine From Tears - Through The Eyes Of A Mad
BadMoodMan
Melodic Doom Metal
12 songs (77:22)
Release year: 2009
Wine From Tears Myspace, BadMoodMan (Solitude Productions)
Reviewed by Kyle
Surprise of the month

So here it is – my first real surprise discovery as a reviewer! And boy, did it surprise me. I figured that my surprise virginity would be taken by something along the lines of new a Black Metal outfit with various notable influences from other genres and strong progressive tendencies, or perhaps from the latest Technical Death Metal prodigy that managed to find the perfect line straddling technicality and brutality. But this did not come to pass, as my first big surprise came out of a genre that I have next to no former experience with: Doom Metal. I’ve always been a bit iffy over the Doom style as a whole; I only ever saw it as a mostly uninteresting genre that was good for a soundtrack to your depression and for music to fall asleep to. Russian band Wine From Tears is great for both the former and the latter, yet there’s more to them than that. This is some of the most sorrowful, melodic, and gorgeous music I’ve ever heard. Perhaps that’s only because I’ve been missing out on 99% of all Doom Metal for the past four years; maybe this sound style is extremely common, going on strongly in the underground while simultaneously being completely unnoticed by this reviewer. But ignorance is bliss, and I enjoyed Wine From Tears debut so much that it makes me want to take up a higher interest in the Doom scene.

Wine From Tears play extremely melodic, keyboard-and-lead-guitar-centric Doom Metal on their debut, Through The Eyes Of A Mad (Through The Eyes Of A Mad… what, exactly? Did someone die midway through coming up with the title?). Many of the tracks are very slow-paced, mainly relying on long, simplistic yet stunning guitar lines with minimal drum work, backed by strong, sweeping synths that are in no way subtle. Since I Fell… , Bless Me Bleeding Angels, and Feeding The Angel are all examples of this style. Other songs are mid-paced, leaning almost to radio-friendly levels with standard chord structure, such as Funeral Time and Close To Katatonia (The first of these being very good, the second... not so much.). It’s in the former that Wine For Tears really shines, as some of the lead guitar lines are remarkable in their simplicity, especially when backed by the majestic keys. Some traditional doomy riffs are present, , shown especially on tracks like Night Of A Succubus, Before the Gods, and Meus Alitus Pater Noster, but even those songs are still carried by Wine From Tears’ signature melodic elements.

The vocals on Through The Eyes Of A Mad are, for the most part, nothing special. Wine From Tears’ singer pretty much plays it safe, sticking to low, deathy growls for most of the album. But he does show off a different, slightly blackened singing style on Meus Alitus Pater Noster, and his clean singing voice on My Tears, which, while not particularly mind-blowing, it’s a nice way to mix things up, and his singing voice fits in very well on that track. It’s easily one of the best on the album, and one of the saddest-sounding songs I’ve ever heard. Another track, Feeding The Angel, features clean female vocals that are actually really good; not too over-the-top, but not weak whatsoever. Most of the lyrics talk about personal emotions and angels, which almost leads me to believe that Wine From Tears is a Christian band.

Though it has some weak moments, such as the ridiculous synths on The Secrets Of The Woods and the boring acoustic stretches on The Sinner, plus the rather bland song Close To Katatonia, Through The Eyes Of A Mad ultimately holds up as a very memorable experience throughout the seventy-seven (!) minute journey thanks to beautiful lead guitar melodies (think Amon Amarth) and diverse songs. This is definitely my surprise of the month, if not of 2009, and fans of any kind of melodic metal will hopefully find a lot to like with Wine From Tears. As I mentioned earlier though, it’s all too easy for this album to relax you and put you to sleep, so it’ll probably take a few listens for the music to really sink in. Once it does though, it’s a real treat.

Killing Songs :
Since I Fell... , Funeral Time, Night Of A Succubus, Bless Me Bleeding Angels, Before The Gods, Feeding The Angel, My Tears, Meus Alitus Pater Noster
Kyle quoted 85 / 100
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