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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A 2009 Melo-Death standout, 14 Jan 2010
In short: Gorgeous, spacious, rousing, vital Melo Death. An album that you'll listen to again and again.

A quick confession, prior to buying this CD I wasn't overly familiar with Insomnium (I'd heard of them but had never really 'heard' them). I bought this on a whim and on the suspicion that if I didn't I might just be missing out on some of the best melo-death being produced today. I thank the stars that I did because 'Across the Dark' is truly a knockout album. Rich, creative, exciting, captivating, entertaining (the adjectives could go on I assure you).

I'm a big big fan of Finnish band Omnium Gatherum (do check out their brilliant 'The Red Shift') and so, whenever I hear of a new or previously (for me) unheard of 'Finnish' Melo-Death band I'm always just a little curious to know what they're like. Amazon samples and a bit of iTunes fishing confirmed all the staples of melo-death were intact (death vocals - check, chugging drums - check, rousing guitar - check so on and etc.) but, as they say 'the proof is in the pudding'. I eagerly awaited the arrival of the +DVD version of this album (which is the version you should pick up if at all possible) from Amazon UK. When it arrived I sat down and listened to it from start to finish... then I listened to it again... and again... and again....

There's always a wonderful feeling when you know that you've found an album that's going to be with you for years to come, an album that (despite however many times that you've heard it) will take you back to that very first experience when you pressed play for the very first time and the music you heard restored your faith in good old rock'n'roll (should that be 'death'n'roll'). 'Across the Dark' has that quality and I suspect that Insomnium (as a band) will be capable of delivering that feeling again and again, over and over for several more albums to come (I'm so eager to hear what these guys are going to do next). But I'm getting ahead of myself. Here are my brief impressions of the album (I'd strongly suggest you sample as much as you can yourself then pick up a copy asap).

To give you a bit of context here's a brief listing of the type of music I've been listening to lately: Swallow the Sun, Amorphis, The Duskfall, Amon Amarth, Omnium Gatherum, Dark Tranquility, In Flames and Truckfighters (not Death but a great band nontheless).

The magnificent grandeur of the anthemic opening track (Equivalence) sets the tone and scope for what will follow (it'll be on repeat again and again trust me). The album isn't simply a series of verse chorus verse melo-tracks, there's considerable creativity involved in each track on a structural level with some nicely delivered breaks and shifts. Vocals are primarily Death growl in style with some uses of clean vocals scattered throughout (would you have it any other way!). The mix itself is fantastic (there is in fact some wonderful deployment of effects scattered throughout which are not over used at all - distant vocals for example on track 10 of the special edition) and shifting dynamics ensure that your ears will be alternately bathed in melo-magnificence and pummeling chugging, thumping metal. Instrument wise - the keyboards are very well integrated, giving a sense of space and atmosphere without necessarily being so bold as to be a featured or overpowering instrument. Fantastic, tight drumming and wonderful guitar and bass work (did you expect anything less). There's a doom-influenced element to the band (obviously most evident in the lyrical themes) but it's more a 'flavour' than an overpowering style (these guys really do rock out). They're progressive, they're exciting (and they just might be a melo-death band that people who don't normally give MD the time of day might be able to get into - believers will find much to love but they're surely accessible to a wider crowd and are totally deserving of any success they attain, whether it be cross-over or prior convert).

Whew (a lot of words), seriously check this album out. Nothing like supporting a great band (and a band I sincerely hope that has a long, very long future ahead of them). Here's to you Insomnium (from a newfound fan) keep rockin!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfection, 12 April 2010
By 
S. A. Mellor (England) - See all my reviews
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I'll keep this short. As per all the other reviews so far....this is the single best CD of 2009 and Insomnium could very well be the best band you never hear because all the other more 'popular' melo-death/doom bands such as DT et al get the lions share of attention. This is simply awesome, a true timeless classic that will last for years and years to come. You should buy this album AND then get their back catalogue, especially Above The Weeping World which is as good if not better!! Perfect!!
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb melodic death metal!, 16 Dec 2009
By 
Yves Havermaet (Belgium) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Across The Dark (Audio CD)
I bought this on a whim, and i'm very glad i did this!
This is one of the best melodic deathmetal releases this year.
I'm certainly going to buy the other albums of this terrific band.
This is a finnish group, but they have a real Goteborgstyle of guitars.
Listen to this, and be amazed!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Scandinavian metal, 7 Oct 2009
By 
Scott Fraser (Scotland) - See all my reviews
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My advice is simple - buy all of this band's cds. Finnish band Insomnium are criminally underated. If you like your metal heavy with plenty of melody, if you like your music with twists and turns, darkness and light, a mix of clean and growled vocals, guitars soloing like the harmonies from angels - this is for you. As with all of their cds the tracks blend and compliment - my favourite track at the moment on Across the Dark is Against the Stream which is just awesome. Buy this then go back to the beginning (In the Halls of Awaiting) and work up - you will not be disappointed.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fourth magnus opus!, 2 Oct 2009
By 
Marlon V. Tomimbang "Dark_knight" (Philippines) - See all my reviews
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I've been fallowing this band for quite a while now,ang every time they released an album they never let me down.coming from the success of they're last album (Above The Weeping World) is a big challenge for the band to top that album,since its one of the best metal releases of 2006..For me this is a natural progression of that one.from the opener(equivalence) you know your in for a treat! all of the trademark sound of insomnium is present.its a not stop metal melodies to the max!I've never been this excited again for a long time since i first hear a metal album way back 1984,via Metallica's ride the lightning.But this time they incorporate a new elements to they're sound adding a clean vocals,is quite good,though i love to hear nilo sevannen to do that duty,i wonder how it will sound during live show..So what are you waiting for?to all the people who enjoy's this type of music go on & pick this album,just make sure you already have their previous albums its all worth your cash!& make sure to get the limited edition with bonus DVD! plus 2 bonus tracks.this is one of the best album of this year so far.congrats INSOMNIUM! horns up!\m/
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4.0 out of 5 stars Melodic Death Metal with emotion and power, 12 Jan 2010
By 
Paul WJM (Midlands, UK) - See all my reviews
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For those who previously enjoyed Above the Weeping World this album continues on with the familiar sound, albeit now with the injection of clean vocals here and there. Don't worry, the gruff vocals still take centre stage and they're delivered in exactly the same manner as before. The guitar sound is also very similar - powerful yet melodic throughout. It amazes me that a band like Insomnium can output what is essentially Death Metal, but infuse it with a sense of emotion - yearning, pain, regret; there are many angles explored in their unique music.

If I do have a couple of minor complaints it's that their music is almost too consistent, i.e. there is little in way of deviating from the established formula, though that can of course be considered a plus when a band produces music as good as they do. The other slight minus is the clean vocals (admittedly sparingly used) - they don't quite have any real impact and don't especially stand out as something that adds to the music in the way that, say, Dimmu Borgir's implementation of Vortex's vocals did.

Otherwise this is a definite requirement for those already into Insomnium - you are unlikely to be disappointed. The DVD adds value, and there are a couple of bonus tracks on this edition not listed above, one of which seems to be an old variation of a song that appeared on Weeping World. Stand-out tracks for me include The Harrowing Years, Lay of the Autumn, and Into The Woods. There is not a duff track amongst the rest either.
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Across The Dark
Across The Dark by Insomnium (Audio CD - 2009)
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