L'Ame Immortelle - Momente
Darkwave For a while, I never thought I'd hear from this project again. Following their misguided move into guitar rock, it had begun to seem as if L'Ame Immortelle had descended into terminal decline, with founding members Thomas Rainer and Sonja Kraushofer seemingly more interested in their side-projects than their original band. Their last album, 2008's 'Namenlos' seemed like a self-concious attempt at recapturing their electronic sound of times past, and for a while, it seemed like the bands 'immortal soul', well, wasn't!

But from out of nowhere, a new album has appeared, and this time it's clear that they've really put some real effort in. The album opens with the spoken-word 'L'Etang Malo', a 19th Century text by French poet Theodore de Banville accompanied by melancholy strings, a suitably high-brow precursor to the album itself. Elaborate, poetic compositions such as 'No Goodbye' and 'Wie Tranen Im Regen' in particular show clear influence from Sonja's Persephone work, the structural complexity a clear step up from what has come before.

Yet between them we get the Thomas-sung 'Absolution', a more straightforward darkwave pop track, yet one that showcases a singer finally learning not to belt out the words as loud as possible (save it for Nachtmahr!). The now-cliche 'woman sings-man shouts' technique does still appear on occasion, and 'Banish' will please fans of the bands' 1990s era when they dished up this kind of tune several times per album. The other L'Ame stylistic standby (Sonja singing a piano ballad) crops up a couple of times towards the album's conclusion. 'Why Can't I Make You Feel' is clearly the stronger of the two, the album closer 'Hold Me' taking too long to achieve anything of note.

Guitars do still appear on a few tracks ('Empty', 'Demons Be Gone' and 'Dort Draussen') but only occasionally do they venture from the bottom-end enhancing grind that features so often in this genre (and bludgeoned much of the life out of their 2006 'Auf Deinen Schwingen' album). To be honest, the power chords work better now that they've been demoted to a supporting role, and hence are once again a welcome part of the L'Ame sound. It's just that it would have been nice to hear some more virtuosity, given the progression heard in the other elements of their style

And despite finding their musical touch again, there's still something intangible missing from this album. Despite the musicianship at work, the album still lacks something equalling the soaring crescendo of 'Bitterkeit', the instant-appeal synth pulse of 'Changes' or the lullaby simplicity of 'Stern'. It's almost as though having reached the age of consent (L'Ame Immortelle are now 16 years old), their full 'maturity of sound' came at the cost of their youthful innocence. That said, this is still a strong release, not quite the full 'return to glory' that was hoped for, but certainly the best we've heard from Thomas and Sonja for quite some time.
4
Brutal Resonance

L'Ame Immortelle - Momente

7.0
"Good"
N/A
Electroracle
Released 2012 by Trisol Music Group
For a while, I never thought I'd hear from this project again. Following their misguided move into guitar rock, it had begun to seem as if L'Ame Immortelle had descended into terminal decline, with founding members Thomas Rainer and Sonja Kraushofer seemingly more interested in their side-projects than their original band. Their last album, 2008's 'Namenlos' seemed like a self-concious attempt at recapturing their electronic sound of times past, and for a while, it seemed like the bands 'immortal soul', well, wasn't!

But from out of nowhere, a new album has appeared, and this time it's clear that they've really put some real effort in. The album opens with the spoken-word 'L'Etang Malo', a 19th Century text by French poet Theodore de Banville accompanied by melancholy strings, a suitably high-brow precursor to the album itself. Elaborate, poetic compositions such as 'No Goodbye' and 'Wie Tranen Im Regen' in particular show clear influence from Sonja's Persephone work, the structural complexity a clear step up from what has come before.

Yet between them we get the Thomas-sung 'Absolution', a more straightforward darkwave pop track, yet one that showcases a singer finally learning not to belt out the words as loud as possible (save it for Nachtmahr!). The now-cliche 'woman sings-man shouts' technique does still appear on occasion, and 'Banish' will please fans of the bands' 1990s era when they dished up this kind of tune several times per album. The other L'Ame stylistic standby (Sonja singing a piano ballad) crops up a couple of times towards the album's conclusion. 'Why Can't I Make You Feel' is clearly the stronger of the two, the album closer 'Hold Me' taking too long to achieve anything of note.

Guitars do still appear on a few tracks ('Empty', 'Demons Be Gone' and 'Dort Draussen') but only occasionally do they venture from the bottom-end enhancing grind that features so often in this genre (and bludgeoned much of the life out of their 2006 'Auf Deinen Schwingen' album). To be honest, the power chords work better now that they've been demoted to a supporting role, and hence are once again a welcome part of the L'Ame sound. It's just that it would have been nice to hear some more virtuosity, given the progression heard in the other elements of their style

And despite finding their musical touch again, there's still something intangible missing from this album. Despite the musicianship at work, the album still lacks something equalling the soaring crescendo of 'Bitterkeit', the instant-appeal synth pulse of 'Changes' or the lullaby simplicity of 'Stern'. It's almost as though having reached the age of consent (L'Ame Immortelle are now 16 years old), their full 'maturity of sound' came at the cost of their youthful innocence. That said, this is still a strong release, not quite the full 'return to glory' that was hoped for, but certainly the best we've heard from Thomas and Sonja for quite some time.
Mar 05 2012

Jonny Hall

info@brutalresonance.com
Writer and contributor on Brutal Resonance

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