Review of the Album "Amok" by Finnish Band Sentenced
Introduction to the Album "Amok" and Its Musical Style
Finnish band Sentenced began their career as a heavy death metal band. Their 1995 studio album called “Amok” is a mixture of melodic death metal and black metal. From the beginning, the first song called The War Isn’t Over starts with the sound of gunfire and other battle sounds. Then there is some keyboard orchestration similar to the band Eternal Tears of Sorrow. The vocals of Taneli Jarva sound a bit like those in the band Witchery. I tried listening to American band Obituary and I didn’t even listen past the third song on their first album because the music was so uninspiring.
Sentenced Amok the Review Part 1 Includes the Song New Age Messiah and Phoenix
But Sentenced is anything but uninspiring. Phoenix is a song that looks at love from a humorous kind of standpoint. A person is reborn out of the ashes of love in order to be ready to fight in a war which is very odd lyrically speaking. New Age Messiah is a song referring to Jesus Christ. He spent much time on this Earth, brought Lazurus back from the dead and attempted to establish a relationship with mankind. The song says that HE holds the key up there, whatever that means. HE holds the key to getting into Heaven that’s what I assume. Jesus can also help those that ask for it from the goodness of their heart. May HE bless the surviving members of the band Sentenced. Note: lead guitarist Miika Tenkula died of heart failure in 2009.
Amok the Review Part 2
Forever Lost is a pretty melodic song about a person that wakes up lost in his life. He wakes up in a trench and then claims that this is such a bad world to wake up in. The troops are demoralized and lost but the enemy that they are fighting seems to be everywhere. He is lost in the forest at night and he wonders whether he will make it out of this mess alive. The song called Funeral Spring refers to the change of seasons as the warmth of spring melts the ice of winter. As someone has died, are they going to be buried down below? With death, there may be a rebirth of some sort as the soul can occupy a different human body. Nepenthe is a song that tells the story of positive sides of life not lasting forever. The song says that eventually misery and sorrow will take over as these good moments disappear.
"New Age Messiah"
Final Thoughts About the Album Amok
"Amok" musically also uses some of the Gothic rock that we would hear on the band’s next album called Down. Even though these early albums have lyrical themes about sorrow and loss of life, melodically they still have enough hooks in the songs to keep you interested. The album ends with the very melodic instrumental song The Golden Stream of Lapland. The song starts off with acoustic guitar and uses some riffing that the band Kalmah would later use in their music especially in their first album Swamplord. Overall, "Amok" is a superior effort to the band’s debut album and they would only get better as a band from here.
"The Golden Age of Lapland"
© 2018 Ara Vahanian