We now come to album number eight by this rather fine Finnish death metal which was formed in 1999 in Pori by singer/lead guitarist Jori Haukio, guitarist Jarkko Kokko and keyboard player Toni Nummelin with the drummer Mikko Sipola joining later in 1999. The following year new vocalist Ville Viljanen came on board with Haukio relinquishing vocal duties to concentrate on the guitar. It was the following year that things started to happen with the arrival of bassist Teemu Heinola and the release of the Before Birth demo and, finally, the official debut Inhumanity in 2003. The subsequent years have seen members come, go and come back again which means the band has two original members and two from very early in the band’s career with drummer Marko Tommila being the new kid in town having joined last year.
It is no big secret that death metal is not a genre I particularly enjoy with the biggest issue being the growled and unclean vocals but Mors Principium Est is a rarity in that I understand everything they do and I am fully engaged with the vocals and believe they are one of the greatest metal bands around. I guess that it helps that they are melodic death metal as the music itself is of the highest order being sublime progressive metal and played by masterful musicians and two stunning guitarists ensure that the riffs and searing lead breaks keep coming and coming! Vocalist Ville Viljanen sings on the cleaner side of dirty vocals (if you see what I mean) and his dark delivery is simply perfect for the music and the band. Jori Haukio is sublime on guitar and programming and he has an almost telepathic connection with fellow guitarist Jarkko Kokko making the band truly guitar heavy. Teemu Heinola is so powerful on bass and his combination with the hard working Marko Tommila has the makings of a truly great rhythm section.
The themes are dark and deep but the music soars and takes you on a journey of delight and if you have not come across this band before then you simply have to check them out as they are a genre crossing delight. The band has drawn comparisons to the likes of Children Of Bodom, In Flames, At The Gates and Dark Tranquillity, but I find them a touch more subtle and refined and very much more to my taste.
Now, the interesting thing about Liberate The Unborn Inhumanity is that it is not technically a new album as the band has used the opportunity afforded by having so many near original members available to go back to the early years and take another look at some of the earlier songs. This means that the new album is made up of material originally released on the first three records with Inhumanity (2003), Unborn (2005) and Liberation = Termination (2007) plus the second demo Valley Of Sacrifice originally put out in 2001. I leave it to you as to whether Liberate The Unborn Inhumanity is merely a compilation album or album number eight but each track has been re-recorded, mixed and mastered for the occasion with no studio trickery, just five musician at the peak of their game and all adding extra power and majesty to songs that were already immense.
In truth, you are going to love this as it is just about the perfect metal album and if you are a fan of old then you are going to be delighted by the re-workings. On the other hand, if it is a new name then this is a jolly good place to begin your education of this most excellent melodic death metal band from Finland.
Liberate The Unborn Inhumanity
- Cleansing Rain (4:11)
- Eternity’s Child (3:36)
- The Unborn (3:47)
- The Lust Called Knowledge (4:31)
- Valley Of Sacrifice, Part 1 (6:09)
- Finality (3:21)
- Two Steps Away (5:37)
- Inhumanity (2:47)
- Pure (6:11)
- The Animal Within (3:18)
- Life In Black (3:31)
- Fragile (4:01)
- Valley Of Sacrifice, Part 2 (5:36)