Originally formed in 1988, Swedish epic/doom metal band SORCERER are back with their third full-length album, “Lamenting of the Innocent,” released on 29 May 2020 through Metal Blade Records.
The album kicks off with the instrumental opening track “Persecution,” a heavy, doomy track with a grim and dark atmosphere, reminiscent of heavy metal legends BLACK SABBATH. The track smoothly transforms into the real opening track, “The Hammer of Witches,” which continues at a faster pace. The powerful vocals, crushing riffs, and the excellent chorus with additional growls in the backing vocals make this track the perfect starter. Mid-way through, a voice-over is introduced, giving the track a bit more of a cinematic feel to it before a compelling guitar solo is unleashed upon the listener.
Title track “Lamenting of the Innocent” is up next, starting with atmospheric sounds of wind and fire crackling, again creating a cinematic atmosphere. “Lamenting of the Innocent” is significantly slower, with an ominous atmosphere present throughout the whole song. With soft vocals, singer Anders Engberg shows a different side of his voice. The song regains strength as it progresses and ultimately climaxes with a powerful, melodic chorus.
“Institoris” follows the darkened atmosphere of the album with solid soul-crushing guitar riffs and pounding drums, with excellent guitar work, the song is one of the highlights of the album. “Where Spirits Die” is a slow-burning power ballad; while it still has doom elements in the sound, it leans a little bit more towards the hard rock spectrum. One of the pitfalls of this album is the fact that there are two of these ballad-like songs following one another, as “Deliverance” is the next track on the album. Overall, the song is great and very epic, but due to its place on the album, it’s easy to lose your attention a little bit.
Luckily, “Age of the Damned” breaks the pattern, which has sludgy sound and slashing guitar riffs – a true doom classic. The very rhythmic verses create a little bit more diversity within the album, but clocking in at 8 minutes, the song drags on a little bit too long. “Condemned” follows somewhat of a similar recipe as “Lamenting of the Innocent” – softer vocals are reinforced with a heavier sound as the song progresses. It’s the lively “Dance of the Devil” that is the true highlight of this record. Due to its more progressive nature, the song truly shines in diversity, making every minute of this track worth listening to.
“Lamenting of the Innocent” ends with the epic “Road to Perdition,” which starts off with an impressive example of the overall great guitar work within this album by guitarists Niemann and Hallgren. After one minute, the song starts with heavy pounding riffs and eerie orchestrations adding an extra layer to the atmosphere. The powerful vocals end up in an outstanding chorus, make this track an excellent way to end the album on a high note.
Altogether, “Lamenting of the Innocent” is a great album even though personally, I would have enjoyed it a lot more if the tracks were scrambled up a bit. With its crushing guitar riffs, subtle and beautiful melodies, powerful vocals, and anthemic choruses, the album is definitely a great addition to SORCERER‘s discography!
Written by Laureline Tilkin
1. Persecution (intro)
2. The Hammer of Witches
3. Lamenting of the Innocent
4. Age of the Damned
5. Where Spirits Die
9. Dance with the Devil
10. Path To Perdition
Anders Engberg – vocals
Kristian Niemann – guitars
Peter Hallgren – guitars
Justin Biggs – bass
Richard Evensand – drums
Metal Blade Records