‘A Day In Venice’
Self-released, June 2014

This gloomy, horror-filled, avant-garde doom rock from the historic port town of Trieste in Italy is certainly an acquired taste. While one listener might find it ostentatious and frustrating, another might consider it to be inspired and entertaining.

One thing’s for sure, ‘A Day In Venice’ is unique. Main man Andrej Kralj squeezes as much creativity and experimentation as he possibly can into this ten-track freakshow of an album. If you look at the raw ingredients of this release – bleak, mournful guitars, luxurious synthesizers, bespoke artwork, professional opera singer – then you might expect a wonderful epic doom extravaganza. But things quickly get far more complicated than that…

From accessible goth-rock ditties to scary horror-doom oddities, and from gentle string quartets to clattering metal riffs, ‘A Day In Venice’ covers a lot of ground. Some of it will make you smile, some of it will not. The closing track, ‘As The Ship Docks’, for example, is a slightly insane full-blown, nine-minute doom metal opera. It is performed by a bona fide opera singer whose rich, booming voice makes this easily the most memorable song on the album.

Ultimately, though, there are a number of issues with this release. The drums sound rather mechanical, diminishing much of the eloquence that the music possesses, while the fluttering bass lacks the power to provide much low-end substance. Some of the songs do not seem developed to their full potential, ending too soon or going off at unnecessary tangents at inopportune moments.

Though inventive and spectacular, the album is too inconsistent. It’s like three albums squeezed into one, fascinating but confusing, competing for attention.

Many voyages have set sail from Trieste’s famous seaport full of optimism and excitement. But ‘A Day In Venice’ flounders upon the rocks, perhaps losing sight of its intended destination.


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