The brainchild of Pauli Souka, Coldbound are known for the clattering noise of their black metal past. But, with album number four, it’s to a more melodic, yet no less crushing, sub-genre they now turn. Jettisoned are the black metal sounds of Coldbound’s past as they enter a new dominion of melodic death/doom; crawling from the netherworld with croaked vocals, suitably melodic leads and a passion for often lurching, slovenly riffs.
The usual suspects can be ticked off as influences, with Insomnium and My Dying Bride (at their heaviest) providing the backbone and Coldbound do not dishonour the legend of these great bands…..but nor do they quite match them either.
Undeniably opulent in structure and ambition, there’s just a little too much hero worship on the likes of “Shades Of Myself” to ensure that Coldbound stand out from the crowd. However, “The Eminent Light” is blessed with a deft touch; a hushed, rich and deep experience which runs the gamut of emotions, and fully embraces the magisterial grandeur melodic death metal can conjure when harnessed properly. Unfortunately, The Gale‘s title track aside – which picks up a steady head of steam – the remainder of The Gale unfortunately does not reach the same heady heights.
To call The Gale a slog would be a disservice, but there are moments of clinging languor which lack the necessary biting edge. A decent album but not one that will push Coldbound into the upper echelons of melodic death/doom…..yet. 6/10