Insomnium - “Heart Like A Grave” [Song Review]

- Sep 16, 2019 at 05:00PM
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Melodic death metallers Insomnium have just released “Heart Like A Grave,” the second single and title track from their forthcoming release, due on October 4th via Century Media, with the accompanying video forming part two of the story started by their previous single “Valediction” (check out our review here). With vocalist Niilo Sevanen remarking that the video left him teary eyed, tough work for a stoic Finn like him, and the band promising the track would bring misery, the short film should conclude the story of the elderly gentleman and his family introduced in “Valediction.”

As a track, “Heart Like A Grave” (purchase now) is a slow burner with a cadence reminiscent of “Weighted Down With Sorrow” (Across The Dark, 2009) and builds from acoustic guitars into the trademark muscular riffs with soaring leads for which Insomnium have become known. What has always made the band so special is not only their ability to write music which reaches as close to melodeath perfection as it possibly can, but to marry this with lyrics which are fittingly as memorable and poignant as this depressing video needs; “All I see in the mirror now is an old man with a heart like a grave” landing at a particularly poignant part of both song and video giving the listener a rush of emotion.

Wade into the emotions evoked by “Heart Like A Grave” for yourself:


In the video, the performance of Hannu Kangas as the broken man is immersive and haunting, which as an entirely non-verbal display engages the viewer wholly in the bleak view of rural Finnish life presented. It’s a tale hardest-hitting if followed through from watching “Valediction” first, and concludes leaving a bitter taste of melancholy at its end, yet with a masochistic feeling of needing more off of this exceptionally promising release.

Whilst “Valediction” was an all-out headbanger, “Heart Like A Grave” touches on the folk roots Insomnium often explored on their earliest albums, with the track feeling like it would fit comfortably in the midst of Above The Weeping World (2006). From someone who holds that album in the highest regard as Insomnium’s finest to date, there is no more ringing endorsement than that, with “Heart Like a Grave” displaying the potential thus far to overtake it upon its release.

Run Time: 7:05
Release Date: September 13, 2019
Record Label: Century Media

If you haven’t caught it yet, watch the music video for “Valediction:”

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