Melodic Death Metal / Death Metal • United States
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DREAMING DEAD is a US melodic death metal act from Los Angeles, California formed in 2006. The band released their debut full-length studio album "Within One" in 2009. "Midnightmares" followed in 2011. The band has gone through many lineup changes, with frontwoman Elizabeth Schall and Mike Caffel being the mainstays, though the latter left the band in 2017.

(Biography written by UMUR, updated by Unitron)
Thanks to UMUR for the addition and Nightfly, Unitron for the updates


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DREAMING DEAD albums / top albums

DREAMING DEAD Within One album cover 4.50 | 1 ratings
Within One
Melodic Death Metal 2009
DREAMING DEAD Midnightmares album cover 4.91 | 2 ratings
Melodic Death Metal 2011
DREAMING DEAD Funeral Twilight album cover 3.14 | 2 ratings
Funeral Twilight
Death Metal 2017


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DREAMING DEAD Funeral Twilight

Album · 2017 · Death Metal
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This is my first encounter with Dreaming Dead, a melodic death metal band from the USA. They’ve been kicking around since 2006 and Funeral Twilight is their third album.

Funeral Twilight is a competent piece of work, the band can certainly play and vocalist Elizabeth Schall comes across like a female version of Chuck Schuldiner. What you get is eight tracks of melodic death metal with quite a bit of thrash thrown in for good measure. Good it is but there’s little here that makes me want to revisit the album as I’ve forgotten most tracks pretty much as soon as they’re finished. My favourite go to band when I want a death/thrash hybrid is Revocation who perfectly blend their razor sharp thrash riffs with the bludgeon of death metal into their creative and electrifying compositions making for an exhilarating musical ride. Dreaming Dead don’t quite have the riffs to pull it off though they make a good stab at it here and there like on opener Your Grave. Most of the rest of the album though is solid but unremarkable. There’s a couple of instrumentals thrown in where they slow things down considerably which might have made good intro pieces but on an album of only twenty eight minutes they seem more like filler, particularly closer Unseeing which drifts along aimlessly for over two minutes before there’s a hint of a decent riff.

There’s no shortage of competition out there for your hard earned cash so sadly Funeral Twilight is likely to fall by the wayside pretty quickly. Nevertheless Dreaming Dead are not without potential and I’d certainly take a listen to their future offerings as well as checking out their first two albums when I have a moment.

DREAMING DEAD Midnightmares

Album · 2011 · Melodic Death Metal
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Time Signature

Genre: melodic death metal

Melodeath can be good, and it can be bad. It can be really good, and it can be really bad. A lot of melodeath is just a watered down imitation of the once so mighty Gothenburg-sound, but some melodeath can be really awesome and groundbreaking. For my money At The Gates' Slaughter of the Soul and Carcass' Heartwork as well as early releases by Inflames plus most releases by Dark Tranquility and Arch Enemy belong to the category of really awesome melodeath as do more obscure releases such as Cyanotics The Chasm Within and Mindmare's Disordered Existence. American metallers Dreaming Dead's Midnightmares belong to this group of awesome melodeath releases.

Importantly, although it is quite obviously inspired by the likes of At the Gates and Dark Tranquility, Midnightmares does not sound like a tame imitation of Gothenburg-metal. Drawing on black metal and featuring ferocious blastbeats, Dreaming Dead take their music in their very own direction, as they manage to very successfully create a near perfect equilibrium between the brutal and the melodic. At times, they even come across as being quite progressive, featuring a couple of Opeth-style mellow passages, and they also infuse their music with tech death metal elements (just check out a track like 'Exile'). Rather than blindly copying the style of Swedish nelodeath giants, Dreaming Dead seem to look to their own American hinterland for inspiration, and, thus, there appears to be somewhat of an influence from Chuck Schuldiner's classic Death releases on this album, too, which I personally appreciate a lot. And this is the source of another progressive side to Dreaming Dead's music.

It is difficult to pick highlights from an album where all the songs are extremely good, but there is one particular track that really stands out to me, and that is the instrumental 'In Memoriam', because it takes the listener through a variety of impressions and because it really captures how the entire album is both multi-facetted and yet incredibly focused. It should be mentioned that, although my favorite track on the album is an instrumental, I do not have any problems with the growled singing style that characterizes the rest of the album, which is delivered very convincingly by Elizabeth Schall Elliot.

For my money, Midnightmares is an example of compelling and innovative melodeath which retains the darkness and brutality of extreme metal and but still manages to be incredibly melodic without descending into the pop hell that a lot of Gothenburg-based acts find themselves in these days. If you are into melodic death metal and have not yet acquired Dreaming Dead's Midnightmares, hurry up and buy it now.

(review originally posted at seaoftranquility.org)

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