Sigh Scenes from Hell

Sigh Scenes from Hell
Sigh's eighth album, Scenes from Hell, is a whirlwind of musical chaos, far more lively than I'd ever imagined hell to be. More like a Carnival Diablo. The metal here is sparse, stripped down to vintage death with a hint of punk or the odd thrashy lead. The tones are viciously deconstructed, but almost every metal riff seems out of its league, bombarded and overwhelmed by a stormy onslaught of horns and synth orchestrations, or a richly evil saxophone solo. At times, the whole conglomeration sounds like a mazurka soundtrack for an epic fantasy, or maybe a creepy cartoon special. Increasingly familiar melodic patterns give the album a theme and variation lilt, leading into martial interruptions, and what might pass for a demonic coronation. Chanted narration and a slow dance of death provide interludes to the high-speed drama moving the record forward, only to sink back into chaos once more. It's recognizably Sigh and works extremely well, at times, but in the end I'm still uncertain about the intended effect and I leave more confused than satisfied. (The End)