Review: Føg – La Niebla de las Ánimas

If you want to make doom metal, the ingredients are fairly simple: soft, melancholic passages, mingled with heavy parts, dark growling vocals and preferably a violin in addition to the standard metal instruments. Is it that easy? Of course not. It takes some talent and inspiration too!

Føg, a reasonably young band from Chile, seems to have no lack of both. Poetry in their native language seems to suit the doom metal scene very well. Basically the only downsides are me being not able to understand the lyrics, and some of the synth sounds could sound better. I hope next time a bit more budget will help solve this minor downside.

Opener Oscura Niebla de las Animas has a most warm and dark introduction, easily taking you down into the spiral of darkness that is to come. After two and a half minutes the deep, growling vocals make their entry in an impressive way. The clean, whispering vocals blend in very well. Good guitar work and exciting drums make everything complete.

Destierro, with almost nine minutes duration the longest track, starts heavy and introduces a nice use of violin sound as well as a second clean voice. Clean vocals in metal are, to me, always tricky. It should really fit in, or it stands out. Where the whispering vocals took me in one second, it took me some time to get used to this clean sound. I however love the two vocals working together in this song.

Contemplación displays a very raw, almost black metal side of this very varied band. Would this be the first track you heard, ones idea of the band would be quite different. Yet also in this style there is plenty of variation almost three minutes in the song, the atmosphere is completely different. Actually one of the best tracks on the album, if I had to choose (which I’d rather not!)

Gloria y Lástima has, like the opener, again a very, very atmospheric start, immediately giving images of candlelit darkness, dark forests, and has some resemblance with Opeth sounds.

Ayün is the place of the album were silent contemplation takes place. It is an odd stand alone song. Very soft, instrumentation, only to be broken by guitar and drums halfway this five minute song. After a minute of moderate heaviness, the piano introduces the rest of the ending of the song with sea sounds and silence. The song takes me back to the earlier Anathema days.

El Silencio de tu Condena combines brutal vocals with refined, haunting guitar sounds. Not a combination nor a sound I never heard before- the guitarplay reminds me strongly of Madder Mortem, for example- but very well executed with nothing too much, nor too less.

Eterno Sentir: I think freely translated it means something like ‘forever feeling/eternal sensing’, is a song that takes you down in deep emotions. Both guitar and vocals are dramatic, but not acted, the expressed feeling is real. The song is mostly heavy, yet in the end building down and finally fading into silence, leaving you empty and with the hunger to listen to the album for another eternity.

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