Published on June 19th, 2020 | by Justin G.
Sinisthra: The Broad And Beaten Way (Rockshots, 2020)
(Begins Obi-Wan Kenobi impression) “Sinisthra, now that’s a name I’ve not heard in a long time.” It’s been 15 years since the first (and until now, only) album from Finnish gothic metal band Sinisthra. Once their vocalist Tomi Joutsen was tapped to join Amorphis, the assumption was that the band was over, yet here they are in 2020 with a second album, titled The Broad And Beaten Way.
The songs on The Broad And Beaten Way were written many years ago, so the overall style is very similar to what we heard on Last Of The Stories Of Long Past Glories. This is doom-tinged, melancholic gothic metal along the lines of Katatonia, Sentenced and mid-2000s Paradise Lost. The melodies and Tomi Joutsen’s distinctive vocals (only clean here) make it impossible not to think of Amorphis as well. The melancholy atmospheres and long, slow dirges pair very well with Joutsen’s voice, and the overall tone of the album is satisfying in a “they just don’t make albums like this anymore” kind of way.
I’m not sure if this is a sign of things to come, or just a closing of the chapter, but either way I’m glad to hear another Sinisthra album. The Broad And Beaten Way is a strong follow-up to the debut, and is a strong example of when bringing gothic and doom metal together goes right. And it’s always good to hear Joutsen’s voice, no matter what the setting is. Amorphis fans should satisfy their curiosity and check this one out, as should fans of melancholy, introspective doom metal like Katatonia.
Summary: A welcome - and unexpected - return