Released: 2008, Poko Records
Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen
Melodic, slightly thrash-influenced metal hailing from Tampere, Finland. When the Empire Falls (formerly known as Empire Falls) was started as some sort of ´not-that-serious-band´ by Rami (of ex-Convulse fame - still remember them?) and Markus, but it was soon about to evolve a serious band as the guys felt like this band could be something they could take more seriously.
Two singles later (THE BLOOD IN YOUR HANDS, 2007 and WHEN THE EMPIRE FALLS, 2008), the band´s self-titled debut album was released on a long-running Finnish label, Poko Records, which believed in all the potential there´s in the W.t.E.F. camp. To say, as for the debut album of the band, this wouldn´t be at least a relatively impressive album, would be sort of underestimating because these fellows have a good grip on things when talking about some kind of sense for ear-catching melodies and powerful, masculine riffs that manage to win the listener´s attention to their side (damn, all those riffings in "Wasted Times" remind me heavily of the defunct Finnish thrashers Necromancer for some reason or other). I wish it could be that way all the time that the songs on the band´s debut could be dominated nonstop by huge riff fests, with addition of well-punctuated melody lines, but this magic unfortunately gets a bit broken by Markus´ singing style that simply doesn´t sit with most of their songs too well, I´m afraid. He´s got a good voice - yes, I can certainly admit that, but in my opinion with a more aggressive vocal approach the songs would have worked out slightly better. Having said that, now all the songs seem to miss that final punch to get listeners better kicked in overall for the album due to Markus´ somewhat light vocalism in the songs - but hey, maybe it´s just me who´s just one tough fucker to get pleased?
In good faith I´m gonna state When the Empire Falls have got lotsa potential in them, but they can also do a whole lot better by releasing all that potential out from themselves, which will probably happen on their next release even - who knows. When the Empire Falls is definitely a band to keep your eyes out for in the future, no doubts.