Friday, October 19, 2012

Metal Briefs: Death/Doom 2012

The Best of Both Worlds

Death and doom are the chocolate and peanut butter of metal. There is no better combination. Have a few Reese's cups.

Hooded Menace: Effigies of Evil
4 out of 5 stars

How can I possibly review an album like Effigies of Evil, the third from Finland's Hooded Menace? It's such a straight-forward example of death/doom, with extended, deep death growls and slow, crushing riffs. I can't say, "This is how it's different." And it's done very well, with solid riffs, solid songwriting, great control of varying tempos, and great production. I can't say, "This is what they did wrong." And I am, sadly, not familiar enough with old zombie movies to write some kind of extended metaphor about how their music perfectly reflects their inspiration. So, all I can say is this: If you like death/doom, you'll like Effigies of Evil.

Buy Effigies of Evil

Daylight Dies: A Frail Becoming
3.5 out of 5 stars

A Frail Becoming is a great example of melodic death/doom. That's not my favorite kind of death/doom, but Daylight Dies play it well. Think Swallow the Sun, Mar De Grises, and Novembers Doom, melancholy and heavy with plenty of melody over the top and the occasional softer part (a little bit Opethian). The stuttering riff in "Dreaming of Breathing" is easily the best part, but this is quite solid overall.

Buy A Frail Becoming

Indesinence: Vessels of Light and Decay
4 out of 5 stars

Profound Lore's Chris Bruni has said that he focuses on music which pushes the envelope or is unusual in some way (I'm paraphrasing here), unless it's death metal. He has a very specific idea of what death metal should be. Well, Indesinence seems to fit that idea well. Aside from an intro and interlude, the vast bulk of Vessels of Light and Decay is crushing, slow death/doom that calls to mind varying degrees of Incantation and Triptykon, as well as labelmates Disma and Evoken. "Fade (Further Beyond)" puts all of these influences on prominent display, as well as including a speed metal-inspired part, though it sadly comes off as incohesive. "Communion," on the other hand, is one of the best tracks of the year. The rest of the record is somewhere in between, in terms of quality. It often flirts with funeral doom (as you might expect with a former Pantheist member on board) and consistently keeps a dark, evil mood.

Buy Vessels of Light & Decay


  1. I love the Hooded Menace album and am usually a fan of Daylight Dies. Indesinence is new to me. I may have to check them out.

  2. I'm glad for this post, because I'd heard a sample track from that Indescinence album and it sounded good, but the album wasn't out yet and I'd forgotten. This reminded me, and together with your recommendation I think I'll go looking for that record.