Album Review: Cold Colours-‘Northernmost’

Long running Minnesota Death/Doom band COLD COLOURS celebrate their 20th anniversary in 2019 with the February 22 release of their fifth full-length album Northernmost.

Track one is part one of 4 parts of the title track “Northernmost.” This is a very tasty acoustic piece. “Nightmare” true to form’ this death-doom groove is sweet. The vocals are in the style of death metal, but clearly conveying the story of a person haunted by nightmares as they struggle through each day knowing what the night will bring. This song has a smooth bridge instrumental, and the guitar solo really complements the feel of the song overall. It’s not forced-its flowing.

“A Life Forlorn”- I like the epic feel of the groove to the riffs in this one, the metal edge of doom. The song is structured almost like a power metal song. The vocals have an almost Type O Negative sound that then blends to a death growl. There are nicely timed chines to accent and toll like bells throughout this piece. The song is reminiscent of Dark Tranquility.

We now come to “Northernmost II,” which is another acoustic instrumental piece with some interesting percussion added. “From This Pain” is to follow. This song demonstrates the death metal aspects of this band. The drumming has some excellent technical cymbal elements as well as flash beats. The meat of this song is classic metal-style riffs; overall, this song really demonstrates the range of musical diversity in this band.

“Spirit” is a song that speaks of despair; the toll that life takes on the spirit then breaks it in the last moments of a bitter life. The verses are heavy and to-the-point. There is a beautiful interlude in the middle of the song that spans the realms of metal. We come to the next chapter of the title track-“Northernmost III” which continues on the acoustic theme of these titles.

“Terminal Winter” has a strong doom element to it. The death and doom style meld well once again to define the tone of the verses. There is a somber delivery to each verse that creates an excellent build up to a real rocker. “Terminal Winter” is an incredible dynamic tune.

“Heathen” is next in line. There is a sweet melodic beginning to this one. The verse riffs have a prog-death delivery. Song after song, this band delivers the goods. Their transitions are smooth and flowing. I really enjoy how they navigate each song; in all honesty it’s beautifully and masterfully done.

Track 10 is “Northernmost IV”- the final chapter to the acoustic ensemble closes this out beautifully and blends into “The Parting.” This song is well constructed and very much like power metal; once again blending with the death metal vocals. We conclude this album with “The Pale Heart” which is a very evolved metal tune. I would recommend this album to a wide range of metal fans. They bring together several different elements of the genre to create their own unique sound.

Track Listing
1. Northernmost I
2. Nightmare
3. A Life Forlorn
4. Northernmost II
5. From This Pain
6. Spirit
7. Northernmost III
8. Terminal Winter
9. Heathen
10. Northernmost IV
11. The Parting
12. The Pale Heart

COLD COLOURS is:
Brian J Huebner – vocals, guitar
Matt Hamilton – lead guitar
Mike Andrie – drums
Jaden Adair – vocals, bass
Jon Rayl – keyboards

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Don Niesen
Edited by Samantha Crocker


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