Owler – Soil (2016)

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After a killer debut EP with “Waves” Owler returned in 2016 to unleash “Soil”, a highly melancholic collection of five songs that showcase more maturity and creativity from these Finns. Clocking in at around 30 minutes, this release takes all the elements of their first release and further refines them and integrates them into the band’s own signature style. This music is still highly recommended for fans of bands like Insomnium to The Man Eating Three.

Opening with the soaring vocals of “Storm”, the release kicks off with a very theatrical piece that fully takes advantage of “Juha Simola’s melancholic clean vocals. Things turn a bit darker and doomier with the heavy atmospheric and crushing riffs of “Amend”. We really enjoy how the subtle atmospheric keyboards set the mood for the harsh vocals and slower tempo.

The tide turns and takes an even darker and more emotional turn with the brilliant “Stardust”. In this track the band invokes their inner Insomnium and delivers some excellent weeping guitars paired with a mixture of growls and clean vocals. The band’s songwriting skills have greatly improved and tracks feel more directed and intricately structured as the lush “lost” demonstrates. We particularly enjoy the atmospheric keyboard that is never overbearing, but nearly always present.

Closing the release with the engaging “Exile”, the band still reminds us of plenty of other bands but know they have more cohesion and a clearer uniqueness to their own personal sound. Brilliantly evolving since their last release, “Soil” is one hell of a step forward for this very promising band. With potential to be one of the finest Melodic Metal outfits of Finland (and the world), Owler continues to amaze us with their tight sound and solid musical ideas.

Band: Owler Album: Soil

Label: Self-Released

Release: 2016

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Genre: Post-Rock/Post-Metal/Melodic Death Metal

Country: USA

Rating: 90/100
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