May 30, 2012

Wedding In Hades – Misbehaviour ...

As only a medium-sized fan of the goth-doom/death-doom genre, it is always satisfying to come across a band that offers a few surprises or a break from the usual death-doom norm. The Wedding In Hades sophomore album does just that and while it is not always great, they once again have succeeded in making an interesting album within this sub-genre of doom metal.

What makes this band as good as they are is that they blend the generic death/goth doom style with enough elements of traditional doom and straight-forward metal to keep the songs from becoming stagnant. The sound they came up with for their first album is back, no surprises there. This is death-doom in the style of My Dying Bride, Swallow The Sun and Paradise Lost but it is melted together with trad-doom elements like Candlemass and Solitude Aeturnus. As heavy as some of this is, most of the emphasis is on melodies and a sublime, cold atmosphere.

The album starts off fine enough but the opening track tends to drag on and I always think it would have been much better as a closing piece. Starting any album off with something a bit tedious is never a good thing but get past the opening epic track and it is all mostly uphill from here on. 'Men to the Slaughter' is one of the albums highlights with a captivating blend of mid-tempo doom riffing, acoustic elements, stunning leads and symphonic metal touches.

It is all put together in a seamless, almost hypnotic way so despite a playing time of seven minutes; it seems like a short burst of enchanting metal. They do have a tendency to do the obvious; the vocals are a mix of death growls and a clean voice and sometimes it is great but sometimes, it is all just a bit too pedestrian. Despite those clichéd elements, the band still manage to excite most of the time and absorb the listener in some mesmerizing passages of melodic doom metal.

'The One to Blame' is another track where everything works perfectly, coming together to make a track that gets much heavier than what you might be expecting. When the band do let loose, they can indeed be a heavy outfit and they don't get trapped in the slower than slow doom plod too often either. Guitars quite often attack and the mid-tempo variations keep tracks like this one from ever becoming dull. The traditional metal elements show up in almost every song on 'Misbehavior' and it is those moments that offer the real highlights more so than the straight-out doom passages. 'Almost Living (But Not Dead Yet)' is a 9 minute epic chiller that gets under your skin and gets stuck in your brain long after it is over with. The atmospheric nature of the piece is wonderfully haunting but it also has enough quirks and twists to set itself apart from other bands and similar songs in the death-doom scene.

'Sleeping Beauty' is my pick for the albums best track but only just over the other tunes mentioned here.  While this track is basically generic epic traditional doom metal, the great guitar work and the hypnotic feel of the song is instantly addictive. The rest of the album isn't quite up to the same level but it is never weak at all. The band have many eclectic changes in tempo, structure and atmosphere so they are always leaving you guessing where they are going to go next. The album's only real flaw is the heavier passages could be heavier like they are lacking a bit of grunt or dirt in the mix but apart from that, it is hard to find any major weaknesses anywhere throughout this 56 minute album. I get the feeling that their début release 'Elements of Disorder' is more consistent than this new release but this one is certainly more adventurous as they search for more of their own style, sound and direction. If you like your doom melodic with unexpected breaks from the standard death-doom formula, this will be a good album to check out....8/10.

Wedding in Hades | Bandcamp
Wedding in Hades | Facebook

1 comment :

  1. A magnificent album from which we don't escaped unharmed.

    For those who love sadness and melancholic death doom.

    Great sound !


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