Novembre has taken heat for a supposed similarity to the recent works of labelmates Katatonia, but you can forget all about any sort of comparison. Sure, Novembre possess a quantifiably gothic rock edge, there’s no questioning that fact. But that’s where the similarity ends.
The sounds of “Materia” are much looser in form - free-sounding and airy, a glistening adventure in atmospherically astute wanderings. At times, these songs are on an even keel with the latest from HIM, “Dark Light,” in terms of production and presence, but the material of Novembre is more introspective and certainly less polished for mass consumption. In saying that, the intention is that you’ll know there’s no an easy formula, catchy love anthems or overtly obvious radio pandering to be found here. Just very emotional, well-written and played rock sounds with a contemporary, gothic edge.
Standouts include the expansive, far-reaching “Reason,” the swirling “Aquamarine” and “The Promise,” which heavily borrows inspiration from U2. Bleak yet hopeful, “Materia” delivers blissful dread and an engagingly tuneful glimpse into an ocean of melodic sadness.