Sinistro - Sangue Cássia
Season Of Mist
Gothic Doom/Sludge
8 songs (57:35)
Release year: 2018
Sinistro, Season Of Mist
Reviewed by Goat

Portuguese five-piece Sinistro caught my ears in 2016 with their previous album Semente, and the follow-up is equally good. A mixture of classic gothic doom and modern atmospheric sludge with female vocals may sound strange on paper, but in practise here it works well. Think of a mix of (early) The Gathering and Deftones's heavier moments, and it's pretty much dead on, the band creating a deep, doomy groove atop which vocalist Patricia Andrade's vocals sensuously glide. Fellow Portuguese band Ava Inferi, now sadly split-up, may also come to mind yet unfortunately Sinistro aren't quite up to replacing them, being more straightforward and having much less variety and depth to their sound. Still, there's no denying that Sangue Cassia shows the band off well; a solid collection of songs with plenty of atmospheric impact. The eleven-minute opener Cosmos Controle is a perfect example, Andrade's vocals both lilting and foreboding as the band go from heavy grooving to a more ominous drone, downright ambient at times.

It's often weirdly relaxing to listen to - the stately tones of Lotus with Andrade wailing in the background, for instance, the band reseizing your attention when they throw metallic riffing in after a minute or so. The word that kept coming to mind while listening was 'languid', the music often slipping back into a mid-paced crawl atop which the vocals turn into downright sexy spoken word. Hooks are entirely from Andrade, holding your attention while the band almost lazily churn behind her; the effect is powerful. And Sinistro manage to throw a little variety in there, Petalas the shortest track present at just under four minutes and closer to alt-rock with less doomy riffs and more backing piano, with the following Vento Sul building on this with a greater emphasis on the vocals until it's almost Bjorkean. There's a subtle touch of electronica to the backing of Nuvem, any experimentation carried out with real restraint, but my favourite pieces present have to be the lengthy opening and closing songs. The ten-minute closing Carvo Carne especially is the sort of melodic doom stomper that I wouldn't have minded the band indulging in a little more, Andrade's vocals growing witchier as the music grows more epic. An album not so much for rocking out to, then, but as the backdrop to a lazy Saturday afternoon it's perfect. Fans missing Ava Inferi would especially do well to check this out.

Killing Songs :
Cosmos Controle, Petalas, Vento Sul, Carvo Carne
Goat quoted 80 / 100
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