Temujin - 1000 Tears
Reaissance Records
Gothic Hard Rock / Metal
13 songs (55'45)
Release year: 2008
Reviewed by Marty
Temujin was the original birth name of Genghis Khan, the legendary 13th century conqueror and leader of the Mongol Empire. It's also the name for this new Australian band founded by Karl Lean, also known for his guitar work with Australian thrash metal band Nothing Sacred. Together with keyboardist/vocalist known only as Kelly, they have crafted a blend of gothic metal that has similarities to both Evanescence and Lacuna Coil yet also bears some resemblance to the mid to late 90's The Gathering material. Karl Lean is a multi-instrumentalist, playing all the guitar, bass and drum tracks on this album.

Sounding very much like a homemade production job, this album is plagued by a muddy and somewhat distorted sound with Kelly's voice often buried in the mix. Karl offers up some pretty decent riffs especially on tracks like Find Me, Let You Go, Sheltered and especially with Haunted and Heart and Soul. Those two tracks feature more straight ahead heavy metal riffs as well as a more dramatic flair with some interesting instrumental passages. The real paradox with the Temujin sound is the 'soothing" and very melancholy vocal style of Kelly accompanying these big chunky riffs. She has a soft angelic style of singing yet is often painfully off key. She uses the same vocal delivery and very similar melody lines for each and every track. It almost seems like some vocal tracks could be cut out and pasted into almost any track on this album and it wouldn't sound out of place. Her style of vocal makes it really hard to distinguish one track from the next. None of the songs here have any real memorable choruses or melodic hooks with the riffs being the only real highlight for the most part. Getting back to the production, the drums are weak and buried in the mix along with Kelly's voice yet the guitar riffs jump out with lots of energy. Irregularities in sound quality also suggest that this was recorded at different times and likely different places as well.

I get no sense of emotion or passion from the way that Kelly sings. A track like Down almost pushes it a little further yet still doesn't make the grade. I listened to this album more than what would be usual for me to give it a proper review but besides the solid guitar riffs, very little of this album is all that appealing. I'm a fan of the female fronted gothic metal sound and Temujin has a long way to go to make a name for themselves in genre dominated by some real heavyweights. Karl Lean has some solid song ideas and is a very talented guitar player but this band must crank up the vocals a notch or two to not only make them stronger and more powerful, but also add more emotion and strength if they plan on becoming part of the competition.

Check out the band's My Space page

Killing Songs :
Marty quoted 65 / 100
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