My thoughts on the new album


Dec 10, 2007
So.... I pre-ordered the album... but I just couldn't help myself and I've actually listened to the promo cd (my friend got it, don't know how, methinks it may be illegal). Anyways, here's my thoughts if any1 are intereseted.

The album is superb. I'd say the best thing about this new album are the lyrics actually. Since my own mother is fighting cancer, the lyrics are something I can relate to in a way. It's a journey through cancer. The ups and some of the deepest lows. This mortal coil is a masterpiece in regards to the lyrical content and theme.

The songs are themselves very good. Now I have to say that they are heavier and darker than ever. While that can be nice sometimes, I really prefer The fullness of time or The origins of ruin type of songs. So I'm not willing to say that this is Redemption's best album, but that's mostly because previous albums were, in my opinion, some of the best prog metal ever recorded.

Every bandmember does a great job. I especially like the drumming and the vocals. chris quirarte is seriously underrated as a drummer. Now about the vocals, yes Ray's voice sounds a bit rough sometimes. But I still think this is some of his finest work. He's got emotion and character to his voice. I just love it.

Now my probably biggest problem with this release! THE PRODUCTION is the WORST on any of the Redemption albums. Now.. let me just say that it's not horrible or awful (thinking back to Nevermore's Enemies of reality album) but it's not that great either. And since the production was sublime on previous releases this really saddennes me, especially since I had really high hopes with Neil Kernon. What's wrong you ask? Well, it's just too muddy and sometimes it just sounds like the bass pushes all the other sounds into the background. Ray's vocals are pushed to the back, which is a real shame since, as I was saying, the lyrics and his performance are the highlights of the album. You can hear him better when the songs quiet down a bit, but on some of the faster songs he disappears. A real shame.
The guitar tone is another problem. On some songs the guitars sound really bad, (thinking the really fast part in Path of the whirlwind, or the intro to Let it rain), although other times the guitars do sound cool (thinking Noonday devil).

Now I may be imagining this, but I get the feeling the album sounds better towards the end. Don't ask me why.

Overall I'd give this album a strong 8 or maybe 8,5 out of 10. If the sound of the album would have been better this would have been an even better album and warranted a 9 out of 10.

whadda u think?
Thanks for the review! But you SUCK for getting to listen now!!!

How would you rate this compared to Snowfall...?
Sorry for sucking...

Well it's hard to compare. The production is better on Snowfall. The new album sounds more aggressive and dark, even though I thought Snowfall was quite dark at times.

I'd actually rate them about the same, but on different grounds.
Lyrics - This mortal coil
Vocals - This mortal coil
Drumming - This mortal coil
Songs - Snowfall (but just by an inch)
Production - Snowfall

Well I could go on and on, they're different but both very good albums.
Cool. I've pre-ordered mine with the shirt. I CANT WAIT!!!!!!!! AAAAAAAAAAAUUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHH!

I haven't anticipated an album like this in probably 20+ years!
I hear ya! If I put all my high hopes and expectations into the mix, I'm actually quite surprised I don't have more to complain about. I mean, I haven't been this excited about a new release in probably 8-9 years... and the worst I have to complain about is the sound of the record (incidentally, the album sounds better on a decent stereo than with decent earplugs, which is a shame, since I really enjoy listening with my fancy earplugs). This must mean that Redemption has delivered and created a great follow up to the superb Snowfall album!!!

Best songs - Noonday devil, Perfect and Stronger than Death
Worst song - Begin again (feels like a filler, something that I've never noticed on previous albums)
yeah the mix isnt the best. On some songs it sounds good, but especially on Noonday Devil, its hard to hear Ray at all! Even on headphones, its just too low. Also the drums sound a little soft and like you said, the guitar tone can be muddy at times but the solos sound great.

At the end of Blink of an Eye, is it me or does Ray sound a bit strained?

I agree with everything you said. Some tracks sound better than others. And I happen to think that Ray sings really cool on Noonday Devil which makes it even worse that we can't hear him that well.

Also I agree that Ray probably sounds the most strained on the track, Blink of an eye. I would have opted to sing that song again, if I were Ray. But, on the other hand, I don't mind it that much. I'm such a sucker for his vocals that I actually like it when his voice sounds overworked or tired... but I hate it when I consider other vocalists.


It sure was. But I would probably rank The origins of ruin as the best sounding Redemption album.
Condemnation- I couldn't agree with you more in regards to Ray's voice. I actually like his Redemption better than his Fates Warning (I'm sure I'll get beat up over that comment); his voice is so much more unique and stands out. I thought he sounded great on the live album. The roughness lends to a more real, live experience. But that roughness also helps with the emotional aspects: take the end of "Black and White World". There is so much emotion there, and in his voice you can feel it. But I hate it with other singers.
I used to be a HUGE Kansas fan. But Steve Walsh simply can't sing like he used to, nor do I really expect him to after almost 40 years in the biz. Call me a hypocrite.

I can't wait to get my T-shirt and 2-disc set in the mail. Maybe it'll sound a bit better. Plus, the second disc should be most interesting. I wonder if the Tori Amos cover is the same as it was on the Origins Japanese pressing, with a female singer instead of Ray.

Good question, I'd like to know that as well...


Ray sounds awesome in Fates warning. But, as you said, the emotions, the anger, the anguish, the love that he expresses in more recent albums because of a more expressive kind of voice, is tremendeous. So yeah, I tend to listen to Redemption a lot more than Fates warning, no doubt.

On the other hand, I'm a bit worried that if his voice continues to wear out more and more, we'll be loosing that emotional aspect of his voice as well. I really hope that he nurtures and takes care of himself, after all, his voice is his tool and it must be taken care of. Of course you can sing in a lower key and the songs can be arranged differently, but there's only so much you can do before you start to loose that special "Redemption vibe".
To me, the band's best record is The Fullness of Time in terms of writing. It is very closely followed by Snowfall, despite a very different mix. Production-wise, the best disc is The Origins of Ruin. Amazing sound clarity. The mix of the debut is weak, especially the vocal mix. Too bad because that might be Mythiasin's finest vocal performance in his recording career.

NP: Opeth - Heritage

"who loves enjoying his music on headphones cherishing each and every detail in the mix and production, it is simply overkill"

That's me as well. I can enjoy the album on speakers a lot more than on headphones, which is a real downer. And also, I'm a huge Devin Townsend fan and I'm really impressed that he manages to create a "wall of sound" without the instruments getting muddy or anything like that.

Also, now that you mention Opeth, I think I heard Mikael saying that he was tired of metal albums being too loud and over-produced. That he wanted a more organic sounding album with Heritage, which he (the quality of the songs left aside), has managed very well with the new album. Putting Heritage in contrast to This mortal coil is hilarious, it's worlds apart. Now, I personally like both ends, just not the extremes.
Too bad - I normally love Alan Douches' work. His stuff with Zero Hour is fantastic. The Redemption is terrible. I'm not sure how much of it can be attributed to the mix or mastering, though. Maybe Kernon or Douches (or both) had little time to do it? Seems unlikely, though.

I wasn't comparing Opeth with Redemption on a musical basis. I was just pointing out that there are bands that refrain from the loudness war. Some of them are even on big labels, i.e. Roadrunner. If they can do it, so can Redemption. I had qualms with the new Dream Theater because "bits" in some songs were a tad loud. Then I heard the new Redemption, and *everything* is loud. I'm not happy.
yeah its wierd, in Noonday Devil its just hard to hear Ray at all at the start. I thought it was just being on youtube. I can hear his voice ok on most the other songs.

You can notice the difference if you listen to Noonday Devil and something like Man of Glass back to back. The guitar is real muddy on Noonday. Its a shame, cause the music is terrific. It's kind of like the original Enemies of Reality Mix by Nevermore.

the new Opeth and DT do sound much better. On Snowfall i thought they did the same thing(on Walls and Peel) where they seemed to mix ray way too low for some reason.
I third that. :D

Normally I focus on vocals, so hearing Ray's voice (which already sounds a little faded) shoved even further back on this album was rather upsetting. :(
Does anyone know how much the sound system matters when you listen to an album such as this mortal coil? If I buy better speakers, will I get rid of some of the problems or will it still sound muddy?
i dunno, i have good headphones(well pretty good, Sennheizer HD485's) and it's still hard to hear Ray at the start of Noonday Devil. It sounds ok in the car, but when i try and listen to it on headphones, my head hurts from it being mastered so loud. I just hope its the quality of the promo that is out now. There isn't a HQ version of it out yet. Just have to wait i think.