So, symphonic metal you say. About a Viking story you say.
I say, quite plain piece of album with quite plain songs.
Vocals from Elina Siirala are absolutely exquisite. The harsh vocals could have stayed away from Alexander Krull. They do nothing for the experience. Personally, I would have liked to have given Siirala full exclusivity for the whole album, or found someone for the male parts in the story who could actually do them justice. Half-arsed is a fitting English expression for the contribution.
Unfortunately, it takes away a big part of what could be a rather pleasant hour and a bit.
The songs without the harsh vocals as they are referred to are not really up to the standard of Siirala´s clean and powerful voice. She does rule the songs, but should this have been a good and fully entertaining album, it would have been backed by better songs.
The song that stands out on the album is Black Butterfly where Siirala mostly duels her voice with that of Clementine Delauney. Male grunting takes a mostly backseat place but comes in and annoys the mood every now and again. This song has a lovely melody and feeling to it and stands out from the otherwise quite monotone lurk that in fairness I find most of the album to be.
So, in closing argument this in my view is an album that has been there, done that model 1a, but it does not give me the feeling that I like been there, done that regarding this album. There are artists that can pull that of and keep you entertained and keep things interesting with a standard delivery. I have no quarrels about the quality in craftmanship regarding the use of tools or how this album is produced, mixed or mastered. I do however have a problem with how bored I get and how same old, same old it sounds.
Artist: Leaves Eyes
Title: The Last Viking
Release Date: 20201023
Playing time: 63 minutes
Land of Origin: Germany
Standout track: Black Butterfly