Artist: Umbrose
Title: Final Nights
Release Date: Sept 1, 2013
License: CC BY-NC-SA
Label / Release Page: AudioKratik and BandCamp

[Note: This review is left for historical purposes. This release is no longer Creative Commons licensed, and is therefore given an automatic 0 rating.]

I had my curiosity piqued from the opening track of Umbrose’s ‘Final Nights’, the sparse single drum rhythm accenting lute, cello provided a very dark tone and texture counterpointed by minimal keyboard effects. A gorgeously spacious arrangement and recording that immediately grabbed my attention, and fits completely with the groups description of itself: electronic soundscapes meet traditional instrumentation.

This relatively short (27 minute) release was inspired by Umbrose’s travels through Finland during the summer of 2013.  If the dark, roughly textured soundscapes are any indication of that journey, it would appear to fuse many seemingly unrelated elements into a single entity that is somewhere between dream-like and nightmare.  Take, for example, the distorted echoes of carnival music in the background of MMN while a sultry female voice talks about riding the on the carousel, all of this surrounded by a muted slow drum track, with guitar lines running throughout swirls of synthesizer washes.

Or the final track quoting “…something wicked this way comes…” in the opening bars of the tune, before settling into a style that sounds like an extremely dark version of 60’s beach / hipster pop, before being interrupted by the screams of a woman about 2:45 into the track.

It’s an overall interesting release that may pique the curiosity of the listener.  However there isn’t one stand-out track for me on this release.  And, beyond the dark soundscapes, I didn’t feel like I came away with enough of an impression of this music to have a sense of direction the group is going.

Gothic ambient with melodic elements would be the best description I can think of for this work.  And while it is interesting, I would have to have more than these four tracks in order to form a complete opinion of the work overall.  

(NOTE: while the AudioKratik website may not list the Creative Commons license, the band has assured me that this is a Creative Commons release.  The CC License listed in the information at the top of this review is correct and accurate.)

Umbrose: Final Nights





  • No long licensed under Creative Commons

Posted by George De Bruin