Dawn Of Winter – “Pray For Doom” (I Hate Records)
Battle Helm Rating
Man, if you like loud drums, then this one will really work for you! Dawn Of Winter are a doom band from south western Germany who’ve actually going since the early 90s, releasing 3 albums on average every 10 years – so clearly not a band in any rush ha ha! In addition, despite their genre classification, which does hold true, Dawn Of Winter are also different in playing slightly more upbeat, with more epic metal riffs along with Gerrit P. Mutz’s more soulful vocals, which although melancholic, are not so depressive or occultish as others in the doom style. So anyone into epic metal could also appreciate this along with those who like their doom lite, and possibly even goths appreciative of My Dying Bride. In any case, the quality of the music doesn’t hold back at all, from Dennis Schediwy’s aforementioned pounding drums and smashing cymbals, to the impressive riffs that certainly evoke plenty of sorrow, but equally more passionate and heart stirring moments on the 8 tracks making up this impressive 3rd release. Along with Joachim Schmalzried’s trademark deep bass, Mutz’s emotional vocals glide smoothly over the melancholia like death slowly creeping up to you on opener ‘A Dream Within A Dream’ as the grim guitar crunches and wails oh so blissfully in tune with the echoing chorus before launching into a funeral doom solo par excellence. On ‘Woodstock Child’ the epic metal grooves are just rolling in line Schediwy’s thumping toms before the stirring warrior chorus brought home by Mutz’s soulful vocals keeps this number long in the memory – simply brilliant. And that’s the word here, simplicity, yet with such quality that the material is instantly addictive and an utter pleasure to listen to, even when down tuned to the depression like on ‘The Sweet Taste Of Ruin’ with its plodding riff and primeval drums, yet so beautiful in its melancholic chorus once again sung so well by Mutz. I’d like to suggest these guys get a hoof on putting out their next release given how good “Pray For Doom” was, but if paying no heed to my call is what it takes to stoke the embers to make the next spectacular flame, then let it be so.