Lake Of Tears – “By The Black Sea” CD/ DVD (Hear The Music)
Founded in the early 90s, Sweden’s Lake Of Tears have been through quite a few incarnations, dabbling in doom, death and even psychedelic rock although recent years have seen them move into a decidedly darker, heavier style with a definitely melancholic feel erring them to the goth scene. Daniel Brennare’s vocals certainly add weight to this being deep with a rough edge as do the clanging guitar melodies that owe a lot to the new wave / goth styles although they are still definitely metal. With the keyboards adding to the bleakness in their harmonies, there’s a definite air of sadness on songs like ‘So Fell Autumn Rain’, ‘The Greyman’ and ‘As Daylight Yields’. Still, that can hardly dampen the enthusiasm of the Romanian crowd who rapturously welcome each track like Count Dracula at a blood bank ha ha! Recorded live last year in Bucharest, it is the band’s first live album containing 16 songs with the DVD containing a ‘…Making Of..’, an interview and the band’s latest videos ‘Illwill’ and ‘House Of The Setting Sun’. With an album cover in the form of a hanged man containing pictures of the tour I can’t think of a more depressing way to commemorate a live album but saying that the sound on this album is nothing short of excellent, making for an all the more powerful experience on the senses that the band’s material clearly has. Despite their sombre style there’s a definite dark energy pervading Lake Of Tears material which incidentally has a cool groove that one can easily shake or even dance to. These guys are definitely everything that their name suggests, and on this superior live album it’s clear they bring joy – or unhappiness – in abundance to their welcoming fan brigade in the wastes of Eastern Europe.