Archives of the Dead part III… As Serenity Fades – Earthborn (EP 1994)
Line up: Henri Fagerholm (Bass), Tom Henriksson (Drums), Sami Vainikka (Guitars), Peter Viherkanto (Guitars) and Sami Kotiranta (Vocals)
Recorded & mixed at Studio-MDM by Erkki Salo & As Serenity Fades in September 1993.
As Serenity Fades is yet another Finnish band, which I would like to introduce and one, which I think is not much remembered, even though they have appeared in many fanzines back in the early 90’s and their demo “Lowering Sunset” and “Earthborn” MCD (released by Adipocere) gave them some decent recognition. Recently “Earthborn” has been repressed on vinyl through the excellent The Crypt Records, as usually packed in the amazing gatefold cover, with the demo “Lowering Sunset” and “Rosegardens” (by August Moon, a band formed after As Serenity Fades split up) as bonus. I honestly haven’t had a chance to get this LP yet, but I do must admit that sometimes I like to listen to “Earthborn”, if only I’m in the mood for something more melodic and doomy. As Serenity Fades is similar band to such God Forsaken, to name just one Finnish band, whose “Dismal Gleams of Desolation” was really a cool album. And obviously both bands have been hugely influenced by the British doom scene, with the legendary early albums of Anathema and Paradise Lost, but first and foremost they have also been inspired by the Swedish bands.
When I listen to “Earthborn” nowadays I cannot say that the music of this Finnish band was anything really special or original, it honestly didn’t differ from many other similar sort of bands, both quality and music wise. But anyway this was a decent portion of melodic doomy death metal and if you like some of the names, which I have mentioned above or below, then I am sure that you’ll like this MLP as well. I like the production of “Earthborn”; it sounds truly well and heavy, quite traditionally for some Scandinavian bands. I’ve mentioned above that As Serenity Fades has a strong influence from Paradise Lost and Anathema, but I really need to add also Tiamat, especially from “Clouds” LP and other Swedish bands, like Gorement. So, think of all the best melodic doom death metal bands from the early 90’s. As Serenity Fades creates a nice, dark and sorrowful atmosphere, but the music has enough variation to avoid boredom, even if the whole stuff is either slow or mid paced, speaking of the tempo, but there’s enough of good ideas to capture your attention and interest. Interesting is that “Earthborn” didn’t follow the trend of having keyboards or female vocals, something what 90% of similar bands started doing at that time. No, all vocals are just harsh, aggressive growls and the only additional instrument, which accompanies these more or less melodic riffs is the acoustic guitar, which appears in one or two fragments. The whole performance is very decent; I especially like the drumming, as definitely this guy behind the drum kit knew how to play some interesting parts… And songs like “Yearning” and “Earthborn” (with some killer melodies, which remind me Amorphis a lot) are a real highlight and a great offer, especially for all those, who enjoy their death metal if it’s more atmospheric and doomy…
“Earthborn” is actually the only As Serenity Fades recording, which I know, I never had a chance to hear “Lowering Sunset” demo or “Promo 1994”, I also never heard anything from August Moon – band, which was formed after the split up of As Serenity Fades. But “Earthborn” on its own is enough to convince me that they were a very solid and worthy band.
Final rate: 70/100
Here I actually could have written a whole article about As Serenity Fades, as I have some old interviews and info about the band, but sadly I haven't got any other recordings of this band, except "Earthborn"... so this is why I do this this way...