Style: Gothic Metal
Release date: August 27th 2010

It’s been a while since I listened to Tristania – in fact the last album I heard from these Scandinavians was the magnificent “Beyond The Veil” of 1999. As the brand new “Rubicon” starts spinning the ‘Tristania’ sound is easily recognisable – dark sombre moods, overlapping male and female lead vocals and heavy riffs dunked into decisively Gothic atmospheres. Pity, therefore, that the quality of the material here on offer doesn’t stand close to the band’s early recordings. In fact, to be quite frank, I found “Rubicon” rather boring and uninspiring.

As such there’s nothing wrong with the level of musicianship or with the sound of this album. For example Italian singer Mariangela Demurtas – who in this album debuts with Tristania – does hit the right notes. The real issue, in my opinion, is that “Rubicon” yearns for a greater emotive and interpretative depth.

Songs such as ‘Patriot Games’, ‘Illumination’ and especially ‘Magical Fix’ do raise the album a notch but the cash-strapped Gothic Metal fan might want to look elsewhere for his aural fix (no pun intended).


01. Year of the Rat (4:35)
02. Protection (4:15)
03. Patriot Games (3:27)
04. The Passing (4:48)
05. Exil (4:26)
06. Sirens (4:27)
07. Vulture (3:43)
08. Amnesia (4:54)
09. Magical Fix (4:20)

Label: Napalm Records
Distribution: Target (Denmark)
Reviewed by: Chris Galea
Date: September 3rd 2010