03. Cobalt of March
08. Sound Odyssey
09. Cantus Christi
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Hailing from Rome, Italy, Novembre are a dark and beautiful four piece that are beginning to make a name for themselves in America. Their early records consist of raw yet atmospheric doom. The easiest way to describe Novembre’s first five or so records is a faster paced Agalloch. Last year the band released their Peaceville Records debut, Materia, which showcased a softer side of the band. Materia is unique in their discography in that it is 90% all singing and is a big difference in overall sound from their previous records. From this album on, Novembre should no doubt be a band that everyone should know about.
Being that Materia is an incredibly refreshing record, it’d be astonishing for them to top it. With their brand new release, The Blue, not only have they outdone themselves, but they’ve done it in only a little over a year's time. The Blue is a wonderful surprise. With this record, they’ve kept the slower and more melodic style of Materia, though vocalist and guitarist Carmelo Orlando now has a balanced amount of harsh vocals and beautiful clean vocals.
The overall atmospheric aspect of this band is greatly increased with this record, when compared to their other work. Even the lush guitar solos have a perfect amount of delay on them, and every track on the record is dreamy and dark. Song after song delivers with beautiful melodies from both instruments and vocals, and soon you’ll find out how addicting this CD can be. The layers of atmosphere in each track are produced perfectly. At times it sounds like there are 5 guitars going at once, and it never sounds jumbled, messy or chaotic. It seems like the band perfectly layers blankets of pure spacey sound over each other, and things never sound cluttered even when an acoustic guitar is thrown into the mix.
The second half of the record has some incredibly melancholy melodies that it seems only post rock bands can pull off, but several sections of this album are capable of giving you the chills. Carmelo’s vocals, both harsh and clean, really bring out some of the parts of this record. Some of the most emotional parts of this record, like the end of “Cobalt of March”, are when he’s singing in a higher register over lower harmonies and in the background are his souring screams. Another notable moment on this album is in the almost instrumental “Zenith” where the first 3/4 of the song blow your mind with what this band can do musically and then suddenly painfully gorgeous vocals come in for two short lines to finish the song off beautifully.
Novembre’s song writing reaches near perfection with their ability to avoid repetitive song writing aspects. If the band decides to repeat a verse or a chorus, which is only in a few songs, it’s never the same as the first time and it’s always intelligently added in. You’ll notice once you’ve finished The Blue that the overall sound of the album is generally similar, making it a complete package, but no songs sound too much alike. If you are a fan of refreshing, melodic metal then I urge you to check out The Blue.