Status Minor - Ouroboros (Lion Music)

3.5/5

Review

Finland's Status Minor returns with their sophomore effort, Ouroboros, and it appears they're trying up their game. Ouroboros seems heavier, more forceful, than its predecessor, while at the same time remaining epic.

Mostly the pace is heavy, blistering and bruising, power metal throughout. Vocalist Markku Kuikka sounds particularly coarse, or raw, straining to keep from going off the rails. Only when tempered by duet with Anna Murphy (Eluveitie) does both Kuikka and the band catch a breathe, and actually sound better. Like a Dream, Confidence and Trust, with Murphy alone on vocals, Stain, and the later Flowers Die are the prominent and best songs here. However, musically, the closing song, Sail Away, is more diverse than any other piece here.

Generally, if you can muddle through the early tracks of rumbling and heavy power metal, you'll find more to enjoy on Ouroboros. It's an adequate album, but is it an advancement for Status Minor? After several listens, I'm still not sure. If you're a fan of the band or the genre, I think you'll dig it. Check it out.

by Craig Hartranft,