(Album Review) “Premonitions” by SOJOURNER

(Album Review) “Premonitions” by SOJOURNER

Sojourner don’t throw you into their music, they hold your hand and lead you gently into their dark soundscape. The incredible atmospheric textures of the instrumentation and vocals completely immerse you. It’s like falling into an alternate version of Wonderland.

The Monolith opens their new album, Premonitions, with a powerful sound. It encapsulates Sojourner’s style without giving away all of their tricks in one go. Emilio Crespo’s harsh vocals have a deep demonic edge that cuts through the instrumentation and really enhances the darker side of their music. In contrast, Chloe Bray’s clean vocals soar bringing an angelic tone into the mix. This contrast works wonderfully to show off two very different extremes. Sojourner’s music has a very strong focus around contrasting sounds; the fact that they combine folk influences with black metal clearly shows this. The instrumentation is dynamic throughout. Crafted guitar tones introduce heavily distorted rhythm sections that pack a powerful punch, whilst soaring leads, such as those in Eulogy For The Lost, carry through the melodic elements. These leads neatly join together the folk and metal instrumentation.

The Apocalyptic Theater introduces some very different aspects of their sound. The strong synth opening gives an interesting variety to the album. The synths chosen are very distinctive, quite piercing sounds but they suit the mood of the track. There’s an almost orchestral edge which prevents the synths feeling too drastically different from the rest of their instrumentation. The fast, lead guitars and harsh vocals create a wall of black metal with the folk aspects gently making their presence known. This track so easily segues between the two vocalists. By layering the metal instruments higher in the mix with Emilio’s vocals, and increasing the folk instrument levels for Chloe’s vocals, they have achieved an incredible smooth transition between the two. The Apocalyptic Theater, not too unsurprisingly, has a very theatrical feel. The two contrasting soundscapes that alternate throughout give the sense of two different characters.

The haunting Talas sees Sojourner’s dark themes portrayed through a primarily folk inspired track. It brings Chloe’s vocals into the spotlight as her vocal melodies intertwine wonderfully with the accompanying instrumentation. Sojourner effectively return to the heavier side of the sound in the following track, Fatal Frame. By opening with the folk instrumentation in a similar style to Talas, the tracks flow into one another and don’t feel disjointed. The heavy aspects of Fatal Frame are gradually introduced so a sudden jump from folk to black metal doesn’t affect the feel of the music. Atonement opens with a beautiful piano melody before exploding into a heavily distorted sections with harsh vocals. Melodies float around the heavy instrumentation creating a dramatic atmosphere. As with the previous tracks on the album, the contrasting textures and sounds intertwine seamlessly. The Event Horizon concludes the album spectacularly. The opening synth lead accompanying the metal instruments sets the mood for dramatic dynamics.

Sojourner have produced an incredibly dynamic album in Premonitions that shows off a wide range of musical influences and abilities. Sojourner’s sound is unique; their sound is instantly recognizable. You will be captivated by the journey Premonitions takes you on.

Release Date: 05/08/2020

SOJOURNER are:
Emilio Crespo: vocals
Mike Lamb: guitars, piano, synth/keyboards
Chloe Bray: guitars, vocals, tin whistle/piano
Mike Wilson: bass
Riccardo Floridia: drums
Scotty Lodge: live bass

Track listing:

  1. The Monolith
  2. Eulogy For The Lost
  3. The Apocalyptic Theater
  4. Talas
  5. Fatal Frame
  6. The Deluge
  7. Atonement
  8. The Event Horizon

Fans can find SOJOURNER at the following locations:

www.facebook.com/metalsojourner

www.instagram.com/sojournermetal

www.sojournermetal.bandcamp.com

Check out the music video for “The Deluge” below:

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