Rapture - Silent Stage
Spikefarm Records
Doom/Goth Metal
9 songs (41.27)
Release year: 2005
Rapture, Spikefarm Records
Reviewed by Joe
Archive review

Rapture is a name on Finland's doom/goth metal circuit (quite an ironic name I think you'll agree) that I picked up years and years ago and consequently put on the "check out this band further" pile, but alas the pile grew bigger and I forgot about the name for many a year. 2007 rolled around and I came across their myspace (greatest thing of the 21st century anyone?) and heard two fantastic tracks from their third and latest album released in 2005 called Silent Stage. Now I hold the album in my hands, ready for my critical analysis. Rapture unfairly get compared to Katatonia quite a lot, which I find strange because I don't believe they sound a thing like them. Obviously the main difference between Rapture and other doom/goth bands like Katatonia, Sentenced, etc is that they have the use of two male vocalists, being clean and death vocals (what else would it be?) Another thing I noticed from the get go is that the music very accurately reflects the doom and gloom presented on the front cover and album booklet, as well as the song titles and lyrics.

From tracks one to nine, things are kept very consistent, with in my opinion, the best three tracks on the album at the start, then the remaining tracks proving decent doom metal numbers. Comparisons could be made to Swedish doomsters Slumber, especially on the tracks where growling vocalist Henri Villberg features most prominent. The switching of vocal styles on Silent Stage is a must, as the growling vocals by Villberg are incredibly mid-tone and start to grate on the ears after a while. Clean vocalist Petri Eskelinen often has to save the day on the more mediocre tracks such as Silent Chrysalis Stage and Dreaming Of Oblivion. To be honest, I think Rapture would be much better off with focus on clean vocals with 80% and death vocals chipping in with 20% for the entire album, as it seems the clean vocals work so much better, although that said, the death vocals play their part well, just a bit less of them would preferable. With the news that Villberg has left the band, things may well be very different for the upcoming release.
The Past Nightmares and I Am Complete are without a doubt THE tracks that make this album. It took me ages to listen to tracks four to nine as I'd always keep repeating the mentioned songs. The Past Nightmares has a killer opening riff which is simple but effective, with also a chorus to die for. I Am Complete is as sorrowful as it gets on the album, a beautiful song with a stunning finale with the line "For once this feels so real..." repeated over and over again, chilling stuff. Two instrumental tracks on Silent Stage, which I think at least one could have been much more exciting with vocals, being For The Ghosts Of Our Time.

So yes it's very good, it's dark and emotional doom metal with some pop like choruses here and there, but...still room for improvement with more experimentation needed in the future and less formulaic strong structures. As it's only their third album I eagerly look forward to the next release to see where they've taken the direction, but until then, I've no doubt fans of doom/goth metal will enjoy Silent Stage immensely, as I did.

Killing Songs :
Misery 24/7, The Past Nightmares, I Am Complete, The Times We Bled
Joe quoted 80 / 100
Other albums by Rapture that we have reviewed:
Rapture - Songs For The Withering reviewed by Crims and quoted 80 / 100
Rapture - Stefan Lindholm's Rapture (demo) reviewed by Ben and quoted 69 / 100
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