REVIEW: Fires in the Distance – Echoes from Deep November

There are some albums that, when you hear the first song, you just know that the whole album is going to be amazing. Sometimes bands can disappoint, as the following song may be something completely different and the first was a one-off for perfection. Other bands, however, the first song hits and then the next song follows and then you find yourself listening to the album on repeat because it’s so good. Sometimes these feelings come from just the first minute of a song; sometimes albums have to grow on people, but for others you just immediately know. Some albums are exactly what you need during a specific time in your life, it helps you develop your taste and inspires you to write something or get the chores done around the house or even just gives you a breath of life to continue carrying on in this world. If you’re looking for any sort of solace or reason to continue looking for new releases every day, look no further than Fire in the Distance’s album, “Echoes from Deep November.” An absolutely amazing album layered with a clear vision, cinematic atmosphere, and the bone-chilling embrace of doom. The band describes the themes as ebbing and flowing through the emotions that life’s journey brings us, to put their words into a nutshell, and you can feel the unfiltered emotion that the band has put into this release.

Fires in the Distance have created an album that is beautifully intricate and expresses pure emotion with every form of instrumentation and vocal aspect that they throw into the mix. There’s a unique feeling brought in by the cyberpunk-esque synths littering the background, that of a Deus Ex: Human Revolution OST sound. It’s so pure in its emotional display, taking you through the webs of sorrow and feeling every drop of grief and tears put into the writing of the album. It’s slow yet heavy, something you can let your harvested emotions out to while feeling as though you’re falling through the cracks of your own mind. As soon as the first four minutes of “The Climb” played, I immediately felt that this album was going to be an album of the year contender for me. It has everything I look for: sick melodies, great riffs, and best of all everything works. It makes me feel things outside of the standard aggression of metal, it makes me ponder the finite life I live and invokes a somewhat unique feeling of ennui with things that have happened in my life and wanting to be the change I want to see in the world. It also, apparently, makes me ramble.

Ultimately, it’s difficult to describe how this album beautifully mends everything together in such a subtle and incredible way. I’ve been sitting at my computer trying to find the words to describe exactly what it is that makes this album so great, and it boils down to the fact that it’s something new for the Melodic Doom genre and it’s also something that refreshes my palette. Songs like “The Lock and the Key,” and “Reflections in the Ice” really incorporate the synthesizer aspect without overwhelming you with some bubblegum-pop feelings. Rather it’s used to create the ambiance of rain and thunderstorms internally and externally. It’s a fantastic album for anyone interested in something that could potentially change the way you see yourself in all walks of life and the way you interpret music and creativity, as well.

Rating: 10/10 (can I go higher? Is 12/10 acceptable? Oh, well)

FFO: Dark Tranquility, Swallow the Sun, Insomnium