Jun 3, 2011

Novembers Doom - Amid Its Hallowed Mirth ...

Novembers Doom, what can be said about a band that was until recently incredibly artsy, poetic and beautiful. With their first release, much can be said. In this album we see the band that was and the band that could’ve/should’ve been.

This record starts out at a snail's pace and rarely goes past the speed of crawl. This band (that formed from the ashes of Doom/Death band Laceration) with their first proper release show us that Americans can not only play Doom/Death Metal, but given the chance, compete with the Peaceville Three.

The guitars are incredibly thick, hitting the listener with a wall of sound with enough power to knock down a cement wall. Dirge heavy and full of woe the guitars are distorted perhaps 90% of the time with some clean passages and parts. No real solos are present but there are plenty of leads. The drums are tight and well executed playing it safe and not venturing out of their comfort zone. The bass is the only thing lacking (instrumentally speaking) as it follows the guitar too closely and seems to cut out after each note has been hit. Over all, the music is minimalistic but crafty and deep. That being said however, the album has the tendency to drag on a bit in places, specifically towards the end.

The vocals (on the original release and the End Records release anyway) are superbly raw and intense. In this we bear witness to Paul Kuhrs’ amazing vocal prowess. Few can honestly touch this guy when it comes to his ability to enunciate his growls. His lyrics follow the standard Doom/Death style of romanticism and loss, however are perhaps a bit more personal than most. The first re-release issued by Dark Symphonies had many pointless overdubs as well as new artwork. The specific vocal parts that were added were high screams over either clean vocals or in tandem with the lower guttural growls. The End’s re-re-release more or less showcases the original recording as well as pre ND material from (their arguably much better) earlier incarnation Laceration.

This album (by the way of the original) also shows the bands original logo, with is more organic look/flow. Over all the original version of the band's debut is well worth hunting down. The re-releases have their perks, specifically with regards to Paul giving the band's history and member whereabouts. Of the two the one from The End is better simply because it has the bonus Laceration material.

Also, this album/band sounds NOTHING like My Dying Bride, as some would have you believe. This band has never sounded like any of the Peaceville Three (or anybody else for that matter) and are truly an original band. For the sake of argument, the closest thing one can say regarding who they might sound like would be Anathema ‘Serenades’ era, but only in the speed of the songs.
Review Written By Grimdoom

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