Review: Life’s Decay - Szilentia (2007)


artist: Life’s Decay
release: Szi­len­tia
format: CD
year of release: 2007
label: Abstrakt­sens Produk­tions
dur­a­tion: 50:27

detailed info: dis​cogs​.com

Szi­len­tia is already the fourth full-length album by Life’s Decay from France, and as expec­ted, they con­tinue on in their ori­ginal style, some­where between neo-classical, mar­tial, and indus­trial music. And, once again, we are treated to classy art­work and lay­out by Lyk­t­wasst..

The album starts off with great force, and one of the best tracks: “Ret­ro­scape”. Omin­ous sounds of a tick­ing clock are coupled with dev­ast­at­ing snare rhythms and a min­imal melody. Based on this track, I expec­ted a some­what heav­ier approach to the music than before. How­ever, this is only true of some of the tracks. I’m afraid some of the calmer tracks don’t work as well as on Lys­selia. Alea’s soft voice some­times edges a bit close to the overly sweet, which doesn’t fit the music. I prefer it when she sings in a more threat­en­ing man­ner, as in some of the occa­sional shouts, whis­pers, or just ‘darker’ vocals. On the whole, there is a pleas­ant amount of dynam­ics in the album, and the con­trast between heav­ier and softer parts is very well done. Nev­er­the­less, it is mainly the heav­ier and rhythmic parts of the album that are really inter­est­ing, and where the strength of the pro­ject lies at the moment. Espe­cially a track like “Sziktalia” is very con­vin­cing, with a strong mix of crush­ing per­cus­sion and sampled violin.

It seems to me that this album is bet­ter than its pre­de­cessor in some respects, but also worse. The per­cus­sion and rhythm sec­tion is bet­ter than ever, and often catchy and power­ful. The sound of the instru­ments is also very pleas­ant. How­ever, for some reason I found Lys­selia a bit more atmo­spheric, and I pre­ferred the vocals on that album. All in all, it’s still a very nice album though, and cer­tainly worth check­ing out if you like the pro­ject or cros­sov­ers of mar­tial and indus­trial music.

Reviewed by O.S.

Track­list:

1. Ret­ro­scape (3:33)
2. Ink­sterna (4:45)
3. Calm (5:34)
4. Stukarcht (3:04)
5. Sziktalia (3:07)
6. Dilu­via (5:32)
7. Katalena (3:58)
8. Des­cence (3:56)
9. Claressa (3:40)
10. Lawsia (2:25)
11. Amb­vi­ence (6:38)
12. Lektvr (4:15)