When Day Descends
Self-titled

Progressive metal has taken on many new side streets over the last several years. No longer does the tag necessarily mean a band trying to recreate/reinterpret Rush‘s or Dream Theater‘s music. These days, bands like Opeth, Bigelf, and even Katatonia and Enslaved get included even within the outer fringes of the genre. Opeth in particular have had a far reaching influence in their two decade existence, which brings me to Austrailia’s When Day Descends.

Now, it may be a little misleading to hear that the band has a strong Opeth influence. There are no death vocals to be found, but there are some heavier moments. In fact, if I were to put a quick tag on it, I’d say they sound like a slightly heavier take on Opeth‘s Damnation album as much of the music on offer here, melodically, rhythmically, and compositionally reminds me of Opeth quite a bit. The longer arrangements, melancholy melodies, clean vocals and intricate musicianship are all bear the mark of these gargantuan Swedes.

It’s not all-Opeth, all the time, though. At times, I hear bits of Anathema and even tiny, tiny hints of The Smiths in the vocal delivery, melodies and moods. Speaking of moods, it’s a very gloomy sounding album. It puts across a very grainy, black and white film vibe. The music rises and falls from somber interludes to more intense passages with good consistency. There are only five songs, but with a running time of about 55 minutes, there is plenty of music to digest. “White Feathers”, “New Bell” and “A Fragile Disguise” are the ones that stand out.

Like I said, when you listen to this album you’re going to hear a lot of Opeth-isms. This trait, while off-putting for some, will be the very thing that draws other listeners. The musicianship alone is worth giving this a spin as these guys are great players capable of handling the hills and valleys in the music with apparent ease. It’s definitely worth checking into of the dreary side of prog is your thing.

[Visit the band's website]
Written by Shawn Pelata
January 24th, 2011

Comments

  1. Commented by: stiffy

    I had the demo back a few years ago. There were no vocals. I think it was a one man project at at that time. Is it still?


  2. Commented by: Shawn Pelata

    No, 3 piece I believe…


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