Old Heart Falls

Last updated
"Old Heart Falls"
Single by Katatonia
from the album The Fall of Hearts
ReleasedMarch 30, 2016 (2016-03-30)
Format Digital download
Recorded2015
Genre Rock
Length4:22
Label Peaceville
Songwriter(s)
Producer(s)
  • Katatonia
Katatonia singles chronology
"Lethean"
(2013)
"Old Heart Falls"
(2016)
"Serein"
(2016)

"Old Heart Falls" is a song by Swedish band Katatonia. It is the first single off of their tenth studio album The Fall of Hearts . [1]

Katatonia Swedish band

Katatonia are a Swedish metal band formed in Stockholm in 1991 by Jonas Renkse and Anders Nyström. The band started as a studio-only project for the duo, as an outlet for the band's love of death metal. Increasing popularity lead them to add more band members for live performances, though outside of the band's founders, the lineup was constantly changing, revolving door of musicians throughout the 1990s, notably including Mikael Åkerfeldt of the band Opeth for a period. After two death/doom albums, Dance of December Souls (1993) and Brave Murder Day (1996), problems with Renkse's vocal cords coupled with new musical influences lead the band away from the screamed vocals of death metal to a more traditional, melodic form of heavy metal music. The band released two more albums, Discouraged Ones (1998) and Tonight's Decision (1999), before settling into a stable quintet lineup for all of 2000's. The band released four more albums with said lineup - Last Fair Deal Gone Down (2001), Viva Emptiness (2003), The Great Cold Distance (2006), and Night Is the New Day (2009), with the band slowly moving away from their metal sound while adding more progressive rock sounds to their work over time. While lineup changes started up again into the 2010s, Renkse and Nyström persisted, and the band continued on to release their ninth and tenth studio albums, Dead End Kings (2012) and The Fall of Hearts (2016). After touring in support of the album through 2017, the band entered a hiatus at the beginning of 2018. The band returned from their hiatus in February 2019.

<i>The Fall of Hearts</i> 2016 studio album by Katatonia

The Fall of Hearts is the tenth studio album by Swedish metal band Katatonia. It was released on 20 May 2016. The album, mostly written and produced by founding members Jonas Renkse and Anders Nyström, was the first to also feature new members Daniel Moilanen and Roger Öjersson. The album moved in a more progressive rock direction than prior albums, and was generally well received by critics. Two singles were released in promotion of the album, "Old Heart Falls", and "Serein".

Contents

Background

"Old Heart Falls" was released as the first single from Katatonia's tenth studio album, The Fall of Hearts . [2] [3] It was released on March 30, 2016, almost two months prior to the release of its respective album. [4] A music video was released for the track on the same date. [5] The video was centered around a man typing out the song's lyrics on an old typewriter. [6] Guitarist Anders Nystrom described the idea behind the video:

A music video is a short film that integrates a song with imagery, and is produced for promotional or artistic purposes. Modern music videos are primarily made and used as a marketing device intended to promote the sale of music recordings. There are also cases where songs are used in tie-in marketing campaigns that allow them to become more than just a song. Tie-ins and merchandising can be used for toys or for food or other products. Although the origins of the music video date back to musical short films that first appeared in the 1920s, they again came into prominence in the 1980s when the channel MTV based their format around the medium. Prior to the 1980s, these kinds of videos were described by various terms including "illustrated song", "filmed insert", "promotional (promo) film", "promotional clip", "promotional video", "song video", "song clip" or "film clip".

Typewriter machine for writing in characters

A typewriter is a mechanical or electromechanical machine for writing characters similar to those produced by printer's movable type. Typically, a typewriter has an array of keys, and pressing one causes a different single character to be produced on the paper, by causing a ribbon with dried ink to be struck against the paper by a type element similar to the sorts used in movable type letterpress printing. Commonly, a separate type element corresponds to each key, but the mechanism may also use a single type element with a different portion of it used for each possible character. At the end of the nineteenth century, the term typewriter was also applied to a person who used a typing machine.

Knowing we didn’t want another ‘font circus’ with all these words and letters competing in Olympic acrobatics, we decided to make it extremely simple but also very real...30 years ago when we were active in the underground tape-trading scene, there were no computers around, so we had to write all our letters by hand, or when feeling extra motivated, we used a typewriter...I clearly remember writing letters on a typewriter with a ribbon directly to paper created a special feeling that no computer would ever emulate. [6]

The music video was created by Lasse Hoile, frequent video collaborator with Steven Wilson of Porcupine Tree. [6]

Lasse Hoile is an artist, photographer and film-maker. He has collaborated with musician Steven Wilson and his projects Porcupine Tree and Blackfield. He has also designed live visuals for the US progressive metal band Dream Theater. In the mid-1990s he was the vocalist for Danish death metal band, Panzerchrist. Today, he continues to create various designs used for music videos, posters, and band photography.

Steven Wilson English musician and songwriter

Steven John Wilson is an English musician, singer, songwriter, and record producer, most closely associated with the progressive rock genre. Currently a solo artist, he became known as the founder, lead guitarist, lead vocalist and songwriter of the band Porcupine Tree, as well as being a member of several other bands.

Porcupine Tree British progressive rock band

Porcupine Tree were an English rock band formed by musician Steven Wilson in 1987. The band began essentially as a solo project for Wilson, who created all of the band's music. By late 1993, however, he wanted to work in a band environment, bringing on frequent collaborators Richard Barbieri as keyboardist, Colin Edwin as bassist, and Chris Maitland as drummer to form the first permanent lineup. With Wilson as lead vocalist and guitarist, this remained the lineup until February 2002, when Maitland left the band and Gavin Harrison was recruited to replace him.

Composition and themes

Billboard reported that Renkse described the song as "lush textures, distinct dynamics, and memorable chorus", but that it wasn't meant to represent the sound of the entire album, which was not released at the time of the song's release. [7] AllMusic described the song's composition as containing "modal melody and syncopated dynamic structure, offers fat crescendoes and dropouts as swirling Mellotron strings, keyboard-simulated vibraphones, and a layers of reverb is cinematic in scope." [1] Lyrically, the song was noted for its said lyrics, with outlets like MetalSucks noting the lyrics appeared to be "full of lamenting one’s heartache and wondering why the world allows such agony to exist." [8] Encountering sorrow, and leaving behind one's dreams, are repeatedly alluded to over the course of the song. [9]

<i>Billboard</i> (magazine) American music magazine

Billboard is an American entertainment media brand owned by the Billboard-Hollywood Reporter Media Group, a division of Eldridge Industries. It publishes pieces involving news, video, opinion, reviews, events, and style, and is also known for its music charts, including the Hot 100 and Billboard 200, tracking the most popular songs and albums in different genres. It also hosts events, owns a publishing firm, and operates several TV shows.

AllMusic Online music database

AllMusic is an online music database. It catalogs more than 3 million album entries and 30 million tracks, as well as information on musical artists and bands. It launched in 1991, predating the World Wide Web.

Melody linear succession of musical tones in the foreground of a work of music

A melody, also tune, voice, or line, is a linear succession of musical tones that the listener perceives as a single entity. In its most literal sense, a melody is a combination of pitch and rhythm, while more figuratively, the term can include successions of other musical elements such as tonal color. It may be considered the foreground to the background accompaniment. A line or part need not be a foreground melody.

Reception

The song was generally well-received by critics. In their dedicated song review, MetalSucks praised the song, but conceded that its lyrical content was "his song is super, super sad...sadder than Edgar Allan Poe", and that the music video accentuated the song's themes even further. [8] Similarly, Metal Injection, alluded to the song's gloominess, but concluded that "At no point should you even question if this song is going to be on repeat for the rest of the day, and if it's going to be stuck in your head for the next week. You know it will be, and you know it is." [10] Yell Magazine described the song as "tragically beautiful". [11]

MetalSucks is a heavy metal music-themed news website. The site features reviews, interviews, information on latest metal releases and blog-like posts from the writers, most notably Vince Neilstein and Axl Rosenberg.

Edgar Allan Poe 19th-century American author, poet, editor and literary critic

Edgar Allan Poe was an American writer, editor, and literary critic. Poe is best known for his poetry and short stories, particularly his tales of mystery and the macabre. He is widely regarded as a central figure of Romanticism in the United States and of American literature as a whole, and he was one of the country's earliest practitioners of the short story. He is generally considered the inventor of the detective fiction genre and is further credited with contributing to the emerging genre of science fiction. He was the first well-known American writer to earn a living through writing alone, resulting in a financially difficult life and career.

Personnel

Band [12]
Production

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References