Thursday, December 10, 2015

news: Darkest Era

Darkest Era
Gods and Origins
Cruz Del Sur Music
release: November 20, 2015
Below you will find the relevant information about the newest release by Darkest Era. Below you will find band information and also a previous review from Metal Bulletin Zine in order to give you an idea about the band in general.
Celtic metal band DARKEST ERA are set to release a new vinyl 7" entitled Gods and Origins November 20 on Cruz Del Sur Music. Recorded between the studio session for Severance and Spring 2015, Gods and Origins is an insightful representation of the group's decade-long existence.
The EP features new song "Elohim" and a re-recording of an early gem called "An Dagda Awakens" (renamed "An Dagda" for the 7").
Guitarist Ade Mulgrew had this to say about the re-recording of "An Dagda Awakens:"
"Since it's almost 10 years since myself and Sarah started playing guitar together, we decided to revisit one of the first songs we wrote, 'An Dagda Awakens'. Written with the fiery energy (and perhaps naivety) of teenage metalheads making their first steps on their journey, we have breathed smoke and ashes into this old song and brought it screaming into the darkness."
DARKEST ERA has developed a fresh Celtic Metal sound by fusing the twin guitar driven old school heavy metal styles of Thin Lizzy and Iron Maiden with a signature dark and melancholic atmosphere.
The band's journey began in 2005 around the nucleus of teenage school friends Ade Mulgrew, Sarah Wieghell and vocalist Krum. The group recorded a demo under the name 'Nemesis' while still at school in mid 2006. A collection of raw, epic and twin guitar driven songs, it began to bring the young band to the attention of the European metal underground. The group's fledgling sound continued to evolve quickly and in 2007 'Darkest Era' was born. The new name was felt to be more in keeping with the darker and more epic sound that the band's music had began to take on.
Two EP's and European festival appearances preceded the release of debut album The Last Caress of Light on Metal Blade records in early 2011 to a strong reaction from fans and press across Europe and North America. It was included in a number that year's best album lists and was seen to stand out for its epic power and emotional honesty. UK and European tours followed with bands during 2012 and 2013 helping to establish the band's unique dark, epic heavy metal sound.
In 2014 the band's eagerly awaited second album Severance was released via Cruz Del Sur Records. Showcasing a newfound darkness and aggression, the critical reaction surpassed that of their debut. The album again captured accolades from fans and press across Europe and the US, and claimed the 'Album of the Year' title on a number of online publications.
Darkest Era (U.K.): Severance (Cruz del Sur)
Every person has their individual way of hearing music, certainly, but the case of Darkest Era (Northern Ireland) seems a bit more perplexing than usual because the terms “Celtic metal” and “folk metal” have been utilized in relation to the band. Yet, I have no idea whatsoever as to why anyone would call this music “folk metal.” All I hear is traditional, melodic heavy metal, featuring a strong quality of melodic doom, contrasted with segments of uptempo energy. The category “folk metal,” to me, means old Skyclad, Cruachan, In Extremo, Korpiklaani, Eluveitie and other such entities with violins, bagpipes, accordions and other traditional instruments that underline the music with melodies of a particular tradition, time, culture or region.
Perhaps for the Irish listener, or an expert, the lyrics seem very Irish, but to the non-specialist, the lyrics simply are heavy metal storytelling; lyrics alone do not constitute a genre. Again: Darkest Era is a traditional heavy metal band, through and through: at least on this album, there is nothing—nothing at all—having to do with beer-drinking happy polka, Oktoberfest, humppa party tunes, or musicians dressed in furry boots.
Specifically, the sound of Darkest Era is characterized by a sense of traditional, melodic doom; sometimes the songs go at a midpace; frequently, the melancholy in the vocals is impossible to disassociate from doom. Still, that is not all there is: in part, it’s solemn music, but it’s also headbanging metal. The melody comes from two primary places: the singing and the guitar work. It is commendable, in my view, that Darkest Era avoids clichéd melodies. The melodies can sound somber, even though, overall, Darkest Era is most definitely not slow music. It could be that the melodies originate, consciously or subconsciously, from a combination of Thin Lizzy and traditional doom (Candlemass? 80s Sabbath?), if you can imagine those classic guitar melodies of Thin Lizzy and melodic doom tinged with melancholy. In addition, Darkest Era’s use of sad, midpaced tremolo works wonders for the vibe of the songs. Of course, if the band has, in fact, borrowed traditional Irish melodies, I am not qualified to identify them; if so, then, my point is that those melodies do not sound “folky,” happy or sweet, but rather somber and/or melancholic.
By the way, the singing is so good that I am curious about Dwayne “Krum” Maguire’s live performance. Can Krum really sing this well live? People who have seen this band live can answer that question. I hope that one day I get to find out for myself. At any rate, the album is highly recommended for supporters of traditional metal, talent and good songwriting.

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