MY DYING BRIDE — Songs of Darkness, Words of Light (review)

MY DYING BRIDE — Songs of Darkness, Words of Light album cover Album · 2004 · Death-Doom Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4/5 ·
UMUR
"Songs of Darkness, Words of Light" is the 8th full-length studio album by UK doom/ death metal act My Dying Bride. The album was released in February 2004 by Peaceville Records. "Songs of Darkness, Words of Light" marks the debut of keyboardist Sarah Stanton. While The "Dreadful Hours (2001)" was a solid release, it wasn´t exactly a release that made my blood boil but thankfully "Songs of Darkness, Words of Light" puts the band back on the right track.

The music on the album is doom metal with both clean paatos filled vocals and death growls. Add to that poetic/ goth romantic lyrics. As such this is the style of music My Dying Bride have played throughout most of their career. Each release by the band have had their own unique sound though and "Songs of Darkness, Words of Light" is no different in that respect. Compared to "Dreadful Hours", "Songs of Darkness, Words of Light" is generally a darker and less goth tinged album. Aaron Stainthorpe´s growls have never sounded as inspired than they do here and I sense some real emotion behind his delivery. I´m generally not the greatest fan of his growling style, which I on occassion have found lifeless and lacking in emotion, but he has defitinely gotten his act together on this album, even adding a blackened sneering touch at times.

The tracks are well composed and I find myself both moved and entertained. The contrasts between the light and dark sections in the music work really well on this album. The atmosphere is melancholic and it suits the heavy and doomy music well. The keyboards are generally tasteful and on occassion add a symphonic touch, but they seldom dominate the music which is a successful choice IMO.

I enjoy the more dark direction and heavier more brutal style on "Songs of Darkness, Words of Light" and as the sound production follows suit and provides a powerful dark sound to the music everything just click on this album. The band excel in intriguing song structures and details to keep the listener entertained and I´m actually pretty impressed by the high quality level of the compositions. Tracks like "The Wreckage of My Flesh" and "Catherine Blake" are excellent to say the least.

"Songs of Darkness, Words of Light" is IMO one of the better My Dying Bride albums in their quite large discography and I can highly recommend a purchase of the album. I´d say a 4 star rating is fully deserved.
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