Aug 8, 2012
Tempestuous Fall – "The Stars Would Not Awake You" ...
Sounding like it is inspired by My Dying Bride this is not another direct rip-off or clone of said band. While it can hardly be called original, it is a fresh take on a much-used formula. There are five songs ranging from 10 to 14 minutes but for once this is a funeral meets death doom album that never drags too much as it is mostly mesmerizing from start to finish. Despite the My Dying Bride influences 'The Stars Would Not Wake You' is still leaning heavily in the funeral doom direction for the most part, 'Shape of Despair' comes to mind while spinning this disc. It is a blend of deep, sometimes droning funeral doom and melancholic metal all put together with a production that has created an atmosphere that is otherworldly.
There is a symphonic element to this album that sets it apart from a lot of other My Dying Bride wannabees and that coupled with the spaced-out production takes the listener on a journey into the cosmos. The guitar sound is of course, incredibly heavy and oppressive but it is held back in the mix which gives this an even more depressive, almost morbid feel. This album finds a great balance between using the very best elements from the funeral and death-doom scenes and something totally unique to this project and this project alone. The musicianship is fantastic but the vocals are kept mostly to fairly monotonous growls and chants. For the first time in a long time, this is a funeral doom kind of doom album that has no weak tracks. Despite these songs being overly long at times ('Beneath a Stone Grave' is one song that could have done with some trimming), it still manages to be one long, intriguing journey to the morose and depressive side of being.
The album hits it stride early on with the opening track 'Old & Grey' which is amazingly infectious for such a gloomy style of metal. Readers of this site would know by now that I recently suffered a heart-attack and this album served as one of my main soundtracks to the whole dreadful experience. Not only was the music very fitting but it was also oddly positive as it helped me come to terms with how fragile life can be. However you don't need to have a heart-attack to appreciate the emotions that drip from the speakers when playing this epic release. The melodies, harmonies and the lush musical textures that 'The Stars Would Not Wake You' has are staggering at times and it keeps you focused for all of its 64 minutes. 'Beneath a Stone Grave' and 'A Cold Stale Goodbye' are the albums two most epic tracks at over 14 minutes apiece and they do suffer a little from a little too much extended plodding but it is no deal-breaker. They are just two tracks that need a bit more patience than the other three tracks. 'A Cold Stale Goodbye' is actually hair-raising, spine-chilling stuff for its first 10 minutes or so only to go slightly off the rails for the remaining 4 or 5 minutes as it gets drag out with less than essential padding.
The title track and especially 'Marble Tears' are emotionally driven pieces that hit where it hurts, making the most out of the use of synths and violin. By funeral doom standards, this is one of the best albums of its kind released in the last few years and I find it hard to fault anything with this album. It is morose, depressing, dark and all so painfully filled with sorrow but there is something about this that will have you coming back for more so this is one doom album that is certain to have a lengthy life-span. A must have for fans of My Dying Bride, Shape of Despair and Thergothon; this can not be missed......9.5/10.
Tags: Tempestuous Fall