Skepticism – Ordeal (2015)


Pioneering Funeral Doom Metal band Skepticism finally returns with their fifth full-length release “Ordeal”. Hailing from Finland, this band alongside Thergothon are tipped to be the founders of the genre and they have releases some monumental albums over the years to keep their legend intact. With “Ordeal”, the band continues to mercilessly punish people with their melancholic sound filled with long drawn out riffs, piercing atmospheric elements, and crushing growls, for nearly 80 minutes of music.

The album immediately gets under your skin with the demoralizing “You” and its subtle atmospheric keyboards. Never wasting a moment to create the perfect atmosphere, “Momentary” has a retro Funeral Doom vibe from the late 90’s when the genre was in full swing. In terms of dramatic, “The Departure” features some of the most haunting keyboards we have heard in quite a while as they are perfectly flanked by Matti Tilaeus soul crushing growls.

Having been recorded during a live show in January of 2015, this release feels perfectly grainy and raw. With no ‘studio magic’ in fixing things and cleaning up the music, this is one of few releases that present a band exactly how they are when playing live. As one of the longest tracks in this release, “March Incomplete” is one of the most devastating songs in this release thanks to its slow progression and very melancholic clean guitar passages.

If you haven’t been playing much attention, you would not realize the album was recorded live until the end of the fourth song. Bringing back memories of Shape of Despair, Esoteric, and Mournful Congregation, the band cranks out more tearjerkers with songs like “Closing Music”, “The Road”, and the extremely atmospheric “Pouring”. Each track is always filled with intricate tempo changes and some of the most ‘doom’ riffs ever crafted, courtesy of Jani Kekarainen.

Marching to the end of the world (and this release), “The March and the Stream” put a beautiful nail in this excellent coffin of sorrow and despair. Seven years since their last release, the band has surely taken their sweet time to craft one of the most amazing Funeral Doom Metal albums we have ever heard. Every member of the band nailed their parts perfectly and this live-recorded album comes out stronger than many studio efforts by lesser bands. If you read all the way here, I am sure you are already ordering a copy of this album, a true gem for the genre.

Band: Skepticism Album: Ordeal

Label: Svart Records

Release: September 18th, 2015

Official Site Social Media

Genre: Funeral Doom Metal

Country: Finland

Rating: 98/100

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