German extreme metallers Todtgelichter are back with their fourth full-length album “Apnoe“, three years after the amazing “Angst“. Todtgelichter were formed in 2002 and they released their debut album “Was Bleibt…“ in 2005 via Folter Records, playing avant-garde emotional black metal with quite extreme vocals. Their second album “Schemen“, was released again by Folter in 2007, revealing a more progressive approach in the music, retaining though most of their extreme elements. The album that started the second era of their career, almost redirecting their music style, was “Angst“, released by Code666 Records in 2010. The addition of Marta as a permanent female vocalist and the introduction of many rock / shoegaze elements are few among the many changes. Their latest work “Apnoe” was released on 15th of April 2013 via Code666 / Aural Music again, introducing their amazing new singer Tobias and taking their new sound many steps forward.
In my opinion “Apnoe” belongs to the progressive metal genre, having nothing to do with the black metal beginning of the band. The sound, the atmosphere, the whole approach is closer to dark metal and progressive rock than ever before. The production is totally professional and their perfect sound quality can only be compared with the biggest bands of the genre. Unluckily for me it’s a very difficult album to describe, since they merge various styles, but in general I can say their music is much calmer than before, with more acoustic and prog rock elements than “Angst“. Marta’s wonderful female vocals have found the perfect match with their new singer’s clean male vocals. Their beautiful dialogues take the band to another level… Marta is much improved, especially in the “color” and expression of her voice and Tobias has the perfect vocals for the genre, both in clean and brutal singing, which is the only remaining “extreme” element in their music. Their complex compositions move between slow atmospheric parts, melodic parts, faster and more aggressive outbursts, balancing everything in pure harmony. My favorite song is “Soil” where, in my opinion, the band’s expression, melody and emotion touches perfection! All of their lyrics are now in English (except for the bonus track in German), which is another change…
If you liked “Angst“, I am pretty sure this new album will enchant you. If you knew the band only in its first steps you’d be surprised by the significant changes in their music. The new Todtgelichter will most probably appeal to progressive metal fans and lovers of experimentation in the extreme metal scene. Anyway “Apnoe” is a very qualitative release, from a band that tries to form a very ambitious personal style, recommended to all open minded metal fans. It is released via Code666 / Aural Music in a beautiful 6-panel deluxe digipak with 20-page booklet and in an ultra limited to 33 handmade cult boxes edition, already sold out.