This great project by the Swedish singer Annmari Thim, also known as the lead singer of Arcana, has released the second album “Mother of Abominations” this year.
As a composer, lyricist and vocalist, Annmari leads the listener into another world, the world of mysticism and mythical tales. While listening to “Mother of Abominations”, you are not quite sure if you have taken a step back to ancient history or a step into a fantasy tale that can take place only in her or your imagination; however it can create a middle ground for those two to meet, a historical voyage with a mystical twist, you can almost give a sound to all those tales your grandmother told you but taking it a bit further, being led by great orchestral arrangements and the “angelic” voice of Annmari.
Angelic Foe uses dramatic orchestral sounds combing them with rhythmic percussion to create a dark and dim atmosphere, but filled with mysticism and magic. Even though we can hear influences of classic orchestral music, even symphonic metal, ethnic folk and pagan rock, I would describe the sound as ethereal carried out by Annamari´s vocal performance that ranges from beautiful melodic soprano to even some spoken parts where Annmari successfully depicts the voice of a witch, a priestess, a sorceress or some other unearthly creature.
The neoclassical orchestral arrangement on the first track induces the allusion of everything said, dark and mystical feel that will persist throughout the album. Annmari creates great vocal harmonies which she masters so well, and also puts a mark on the album being more vocally elaborate on the second track The Get.
All Her Princes Are Gone is a slower track where the feeling of mysticism is subdued and instead the feeling of sadness emerges. Angelic Foe rises again on Shapes Without Shadows, a complete lyrical tale with an enigmatic intro that blossoms into the great and powerful chorus. On the contrary, Pestilence and Smither starts out strongly with some heavy percussion that characterizes the song all the way through, and even without Annmari’s voice this piece would be a great track since it is so rich in sound that puts Annmari this time a bit out of focus.
Bewitching Lilith is my favourite track, as we can hear what I consider the most powerful chorus where orchestral arrangement works brilliantly with Annmari’s vocals, and at the very end of the song we can hear Annmari’s almost sinister whisper narrative; a complete tale that goes beyond just music and can easily be translated into an image before your very eyes.
A slower pace comes with the next track, Workers of Harm, and even though Angelic Foe utilize industrial elements as well throughout the album, we can hear the use of those elements clearly on this track. Another darkly painted song The Judgement flirts with pagan and ethnic music that is most prominent on this track. They decide to give us closure with Enemies of God that leans more to the beat and the voice rather than to the melody, but remains a good choice for soothing our vexed imagination after such a grand voyage.
01. Daughter of Comfort (06:42)
02. The Get (04:32)
03. All Her Princes Are Gone (06:05)
04. Shapes Without Shadows (04:59)
05. Pestilence and Smither (03:43)
06. Bewitching Lilith (04:30)
07. Workers of Harm (06:56)
08. The Judgement (05:23)
09. Enemies of God (07:22)
Written by Annmari and video games sound designer Samuel Lidström, the final mixing and mastering for “Mother of Abominations” has been handled by Peter Bjärgo (Arcana, Sophia).
“Mother of Abominations” Digipak CD 2015
Label: Equilibrium Music
Web site: http://www.angelicfoe.com/
Here’s “Mother of Abominations” album preview!