DRACONIAN

Doom Metal / Death-Doom Metal / Gothic Metal • Sweden
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Draconian is a Swedish gothic doom metal band, formed in Säffle, Sweden in 1994. The band consists of Anders Jacobsson (vocals, writing), Lisa Johansson (vocals), Johan Ericson (guitars, writing), Jerry Torstensson (drums, percussion), Daniel Arvidsson (guitars), Fredrik Johansson (bass), and Andreas Karlsson (keyboards, programming). They produce songs with atmospheric, melodic, and emotive characteristics.

In May of 1994, drummer and vocalist Johan Ericson, bassist and vocalist Jesper Stolpe and guitarist Andy Hindenäs assembled the band Kerberos, initially playing melodic death metal with black metal influences. Seven months later, lead vocalist and lyrics composer Anders Jacobsson joined the band, and its name changed to Draconian.

Their first demo — Shades of a Lost Moon — was recorded in October 1995, a week subsequent to their first live concert. The demo counted with flutist and vocalist Jessica Eriksson, keyboardist and vocalist Susanne Arvidsson and with a special participation of Andreas Haag on the
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DRACONIAN Discography

DRACONIAN albums / top albums

DRACONIAN Where Lovers Mourn album cover 4.00 | 9 ratings
Where Lovers Mourn
Gothic Metal 2003
DRACONIAN Arcane Rain Fell album cover 3.73 | 6 ratings
Arcane Rain Fell
Doom Metal 2005
DRACONIAN The Burning Halo album cover 3.94 | 8 ratings
The Burning Halo
Death-Doom Metal 2006
DRACONIAN Turning Season Within album cover 4.41 | 11 ratings
Turning Season Within
Doom Metal 2008
DRACONIAN A Rose for the Apocalypse album cover 3.69 | 9 ratings
A Rose for the Apocalypse
Gothic Metal 2011
DRACONIAN Sovran album cover 3.90 | 5 ratings
Sovran
Doom Metal 2015
DRACONIAN Under A Godless Veil album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Under A Godless Veil
Doom Metal 2020

DRACONIAN EPs & splits

DRACONIAN live albums

DRACONIAN demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

DRACONIAN Shades of a Lost Moon album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Shades of a Lost Moon
Doom Metal 1996
DRACONIAN In Glorious Victory album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
In Glorious Victory
Death-Doom Metal 1997
DRACONIAN The Closed Eyes of Paradise album cover 3.00 | 1 ratings
The Closed Eyes of Paradise
Death-Doom Metal 2000
DRACONIAN Frozen Features album cover 4.00 | 1 ratings
Frozen Features
Doom Metal 2002
DRACONIAN Dark Oceans We Cry album cover 4.12 | 4 ratings
Dark Oceans We Cry
Death-Doom Metal 2002

DRACONIAN re-issues & compilations

DRACONIAN singles (1)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
No Greater Sorrow
Doom Metal 2008

DRACONIAN movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

DRACONIAN Reviews

DRACONIAN Turning Season Within

Album · 2008 · Doom Metal
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Warthur
Draconian play a style of doom metal tinged with influences from the likes of Paradise Lost and My Dying Bride - not one, specific moment in those bands' careers, mind, but across a broad span of their careers, so you have a few elements of the death-doom exploration of Paradise Lost/MDB's early years and the more gothic approach of later albums all blended in here. You've got "beauty and the beast" style vocals here, but in an altogether darker and more gloom-laden way than I've ever seen that particular approach used before.

All of that isn't the most original combination of elements - but as is often the case in doom, what's less important is the originality of your ideas and more the flair with which you deploy them. This is a listenable album which kept me entertained a bit more consistently than Arcane Rain Fell, but isn't so much better than that release that I'd say it's really taken Draconian's sound to the next level. A solid but not classic release.

DRACONIAN Turning Season Within

Album · 2008 · Doom Metal
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arcane-beautiful
Draconian are a band that I have kind of let slip past me these few years. In all honesty, I don't even remember buying this album, I just kind of always had it lying around. But now and then, when I'm in the mood I'll put this on. And...well. I love this album.

Now when it comes to Doom, I like a lot of aspects of it. But if I was to really pin point the main reason why I love doom, Draconian sum it up best (yep, even more than My Dying Bride). Their sound is just incredibly beautiful. Now it isn't beautiful in a major key kind of sense, but yet more in a minor chord melancholic sense. Personally, I just think their sound and songwriting ability is beautiful. If you haven't heard this band, the best way I can describe the sound of this band is they are like a slower and less complicated version of Opeth but with occasional spoken word passages and female vocals. I also love the use of keyboards throughout this album. Sadly the band don't have a full time keyboardist (at least on this album they don't), but the melody lines being accompanied by soaring mellotrons do add a mad amount of atmospheric tones to this album, making it really stand out in the doom genre.

Along with the beautiful music these guys make, the biggest positive aspect they have is the contrasts between harsh male vocals and clean female vocals. The male vocals are extremely impressive, with Anders being one of the best growlers I have heard in a long time. The female vocals are great as well. Albeit not the best female vocals I've heard and maybe not the most attractive melody lines, they still show a beautiful side to Anders harsh growls. The spoken word passages now and then are also something which isn't heard a lot in metal music, but they do add certain atmospheric tones to tracks now and then.

Lyrically the album is kind of a concept album, with each song detailing the breaking apart of a relationship between two people. Now, being a metal album, the lyrics take some rather Gothic twists, so expect some minor references to self harming and a lot of pathetic fallacy.

The album opener “Seasons Apart” shows off beautiful vocals from Lisa and mixing them with Anders guttural growls. Beautiful poetry and music surround the song too, creating a very brooding and melancholic atmosphere.

“When I Wake” is another personal favorite of mine. One of the heavier songs on the album, the song definitely shows off some of Anders best vocals. Some pretty killer riffs too.

The album's longest track “Earthbound” sees the band tackling a lot of different moods and atmospheres, with a lot of twists and turns, including piano interludes, bone crushing riffs and acoustic breakdowns.

My personal favorite song on the album is “Morphine Cloud.” An absolutely beautifully crafted song with one of the most beautiful riffs I have heard, showing that a guitar can be used in a more unique and heart-warming manner.

“The Empty Stare” is probably the song which should have been chosen as a single (not sure if a single was chosen for this album).

In conclusion, this is probably one of the best modern doom metal albums released in the past few years. The band have been able to successfully mould their own unique sound and have really carved a nice path for themselves. Terribly underrated and overly talented.

8.7/10

Genres: Doom, Melodic Death Metal, Death Metal, Gothic Metal

Country of origin: Sweden

Year of release: 2008

DRACONIAN Arcane Rain Fell

Album · 2005 · Doom Metal
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Warthur
Draconian perform a sort of bombastic gothic metal/doom metal hybrid (think a doomier Type O Negative, or a more flamboyant My Dying Bride), and on Arcane Rain Fell they've latched onto subject matter that provides a backdrop suitable for their theatrical style - namely, a Paradise Lost-esque tale of the fall of Lucifer from Heaven and the creation of Hell. It's not going to rewrite the rules of gothic metal or death/doom, but it's an engaging enough application of the style and worth a listen if you're not completely averse to the usual gothic and death/doom tropes (mix of growled and clean vocals, doomy riffs, you know the drill).

DRACONIAN A Rose for the Apocalypse

Album · 2011 · Gothic Metal
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Conor Fynes
'A Rose For The Apocalypse' - Draconian (7/10)

Draconian may have been the first doom metal band I ever got into. Although I had already experienced the powerful fusion of 'extreme metal' and melodic melancholy through bands like Opeth, Draconian's debut album 'Where Lovers Mourn' presented to me a different side of metal, one that took the tempo to the pace of a funeral march, with a dreary tone to match. Although doom is in no short supply of bands, and Draconian was certainly not the first to innovate this well-worn sound, they were the band who broke me into doom. In the years that have passed since then, however, Draconian have certainly changed their sound, to one that would not have been nearly as refreshing to me back then, but possesses as much emotional resonance as they always have. 'A Rose For The Apocalypse' continues Draconian's path towards a less obscure, and more harmonious sound. While the progressive and emphatic polish of Draconian will leave a weak taste to some, the band continues to mature and develop.

The death-doom category generally does not have much room for bands to separate from one another stylistically, without throwing away the label altogether. All the same, there is a significant development from their early material and this. Most notably, the band favours a much cleaner sense of production than they have in the past, and certainly in comparison with their first record. When you factor in the grief-filled growls, melodic guitar riffs and emphasis on epic composition, it's easy to joke that Draconian and Swallow The Sun are the same band, and that was the first thing I thought when hearing 'A Rose For The Apocalypse'. Regardless, this is not necessarily a bad path for Draconian to go down. As the incredible opener 'The Drowning Age' demonstrates, there is much potential for that feeling of epic, emotional impact that Draconian have always seen fit to deliver.

The vocals are structured around the often-used 'beauty and the beast' dynamic; that is, the contrast of pretty female vocals and a male growler. I have often found this gimmick to fall short and tread 'pure cheese' territory, although Draconian don't do a bad job with employing it. Lisa Johansson's voice is pure and the melodies she sings are stirring. As expected, the instrumentation is nothing to show off, but 'A Rose For The Apocalypse' feels very well produced and professionally performed. Where I feel that 'A Rose For The Apocalypse' falls off the wagon a bit is simply in the repetitive nature of the ideas on the album. That's not to say that any of these songs repeat themselves into monotony; the songwriting here is excellent. Rather on a hollistic album basis, it's difficult to be surprised even two or three songs into the record. Besides some ambient violin and an occasional mellotron, it becomes slightly difficult to maintain interest in what Draconian are doing by the end of the album, if only for the fact that these songs sound so much the same. Granted, there has never been a great deal of variety in their work or doom in general, but with the slightly more song-oriented, upbeat and produced nature, 'A Rose For The Apocalypse' feels like it runs in circles. On a song-by-song level however, Draconian are making some of the best death-doom out there.

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