Dark Castle
Spirited Migration

One only need look at the Jon Baizley-ish artwork, the Scott Hull mastering and the label to have a guess as to the style of this solid full length debut from this Florida duo: droning, psychedelic, doomy post rock styled sludge cut from the same cloth as Deadbird, Rwake, Samothrace, Minsk and such.

While hardly mind blowing, Dark Castle (featuring drummer Rob Shaffer formerly of tech metalcore act Into the Moat) delivers ample moments of shoe-gazing, despondency and languid segues of dreamy, droning ambiance within the 8 surprisingly short songs (the longest is only a shade under 7 minutes) contained on this 37 minute long player.

All the elements are here in spades with the focus on plodding, depressive, dirges flocked with somber melodies lines and hollow angst filled shouts. Most of the tracks are satisfying in their mournful but sludgy delivery, but I have to say, other than the all too short “Grasping the Awe”, which delivers a stunning Samothrace-like (think “Awkward Hearts”) 4 and a half minutes of rending artistry and closer “A Depth Returns” with some haunting guitar lines, not too many of the other tracks really grabbed me. The title track is a short flamenco is number and “Weather the Storm” is a largely programmed instrumental interlude, so things are broken up a bit but for the most part, nothing else really breaks the mold of pulls me in.

Still, for fans of the bands mentioned, this might be worth a look as it does everything well enough, and i’ll certainly check the next release out, but right now they just just lack that extra element to raise their material to the next level.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Erik T
June 22nd, 2009


  1. Commented by: axiom

    I only listened to a little, but thought there were nice subtleties in the playing.

  2. Commented by: john

    Dark Castle live is much more powerful/raw than it is on record. That’s not to say that that isn’t the case with most records in comparison to live shows, but this record does not hold sand/verity to what Dark Castle truly sound like. Seems hollowed out on the record//no “umph,” so to speak.

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