Dec 2011 05

Covenant - Modern RuinCovenant
Category: EBM
Album: Modern Ruin
Stars: 2.5
Blurb: Covenant’s seventh studio album, Modern Ruin is an engrossing exploration of emotion, energy, and reflection, though longtime fans may find the new sound hard to swallow.


After what seemed to many an infinite wait, Covenant finally unveiled Modern Ruin in 2011. And to be honest, true Covenant fans may find themselves disappointed by the latest release as it seems to be heading along the road to a more mainstream and temperate sound. But this slight shift may actually make Modern Ruin more accessible for new listeners. Eskil Simonsson’s voice is the star. Passionate and strong, he invokes a sense of longing and wonder throughout many of the songs, more along the lines of Dave Gahan or Mark Hockings than his usual Peter Murphy comparisons. The music itself is a bit more subdued than earlier material; still exceedingly danceable but offering a dark backdrop rather than flashing glittery lights. This is very likely the influence of the versatile Daniel Myer.

Modern Ruin is a diverse album, ranging from moody to energetic. But whether it is the dark science fiction-tinged title track, the distorted vocals of “In the Night,” the body and heart-moving “Judge of My Domain,” or the affecting loveliness of “The Beauty and the Grace,” the rhythm and lyrics are powerful. Covenant continues to make dance music, even if the pace has slowed a bit. “Dynamo Clock” is a good example, a slow EBM stomper that clearly shows Myer’s influence but could easily hearken to Covenant’s early years. But then we have “Kairos,” a brief and really slow filler song that can be easily passed over. Strangely, it’s the single “Lightbringer” featuring Necro Facility that feels most dissimilar to the rest of the album. The synth work is amateur, the lyrics lack the emotional appeal of the other songs, and Simonsson’s vocals are overshadowed by Necro Facility. If you buy Modern Ruin based on that one song, you’ll be very disappointed.

Overall, Modern Ruin is a solid album of highly danceable songs worthy of inclusion in the Covenant collection. However, the departure from the established sound may alienate as many old fans as it attracts new ones.
Track list:

  1. Modern Ruin
  2. Lightbringer (ft. Necro Facility)
  3. Judge of My Domain
  4. Dynamo Clock
  5. Kairos
  6. The Beauty and the Grace
  7. Get On
  8. Worlds Collide
  9. The Night
  10. Beat the Noise
  11. The Road

Covenant Website
Covenant MySpace
Covenant Facebook
Metropolis Records Website
Metropolis Records MySpace
Metropolis Records Facebook
Purchase at:
Amazon CD
Amazon CD (Deluxe)
Amazon MP3
Amazon MP3 (Deluxe)
Charity VanDeberg (CharityV)

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