THE DOOMSDAY KINGDOM — The Doomsday Kingdom (review)

THE DOOMSDAY KINGDOM — The Doomsday Kingdom album cover Album · 2017 · Traditional Doom Metal Buy this album from MMA partners
4.5/5 ·
adg211288
Swedish musician Leif Edling may be most famous for being the founder and main writer for major doom metal act Candlemass, but it more recent years he's been furthering his doom metal brand with another project, Avatarium and has two studio albums to that name already with the release of the third, Hurricanes and Halos (2017) imminent at the time of writing this review. Further enhancing his doom metal CV now is The Doomsday Kingdom, whose self-titled debut album appeared a couple of months before the third Avatarium album. Edling founded the project initially as a second solo outing following the project under his own name that spawned the album Songs of Torment, Songs of Joy (2008). He released the Never Machine Demo EP (2016) as a solo project, with a few guests to help along the way, but afterwards The Doomsday Kingdom evolved into a full band.

Avatarium fans will of course be familiar with Marcus Jidell, who again joins Leif Edling as the group's guitarist, with Edling taking on his usual bassist role. For a drummer they've brought in Andreas Johansson of Narnia, Rob Rock and Royal Hunt fame. Together the three have crafted some top quality traditional doom metal music full of heavy, prolonged riffs but also a sense of melody and an energetic attitude. Putting the finishing touches to their sound is their vocalist Niklas Stålvind, better known as the frontman of the heavy metal act Wolf, whose fans will get to hear this great singer in a bit of a different context on The Doomsday Kingdom. He certainly sounds at home within the doom metal genre, delivering powerful, often quite raw clean vocals. No better example of how well everything the group has going for them works is the third song, A Spoonful of Darkness. Now this is really what I want to hear when I think of traditional doom metal! Great vocals, heavy riffs and a menacing atmosphere without any cheapening of their brand by borrowing any elements from extreme metal.

The album is hardly a one trick pony though. Some songs have an even more upbeat feel to them. It's doom, but not necessarily gloom. While more straight-forward doom metal in direction compared to the last Avatarium album The Girl with the Raven Mask (2015) a few elements creep in that seem quite Avatarium-like, such as some light progressive and even psychedelic flavours behind the riff driven doom metal. The Sceptre is another clear album highlight in this regard, featuring a 7:19 minute long running time and some extended instrumental work where the song really goes off on a tangent in true prog style, featuring a moog solo from guest Joakim Svalberg, before returning to the song's familiar structure that it had been at previously.

The first of a double dose of new Leif Edling material for 2017, The Doomsday Kingdom may actually be the album for his fans to get their doom metal kicks this year rather than Avatarium, if the two songs released in the run up to their next album are anything to judge by. Of course they might just be holding some more full-on doom metal material back for the full album release, but in any case it would be inadvisable to pass up a copy of The Doomsday Kingdom. Edling's long history with doom metal has made him a true master of his craft. If you like doom metal and especially any of his various projects within the genre, then this is a must have.
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adg211288 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
After two listens to Avatarium I think this is the stronger album. I wouldn't say Avatarium has been a disappointment but so far at least it hasn't made the same impact as their first two.
adg211288 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
Doom metal may be pushing it this time, as expected. There is some on the album but definitely less than last time (which of course was also less than the first one). Just finished my first listen and I'm unsure of what sub would be better though. It's not really 'heavy metal' in either a traditional or modern sense but first impressions say it is still too metal to be hard rock. It's not really prog either.

I'd be interested in what Paul thinks before anything is done with it anyway.

666sharon666 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
I haven't received my copy yet and I'm determined not to listen to any more of it (beyond the singles) anywhere until then. I am wondering where you think it fits here though, Adam? Early RYM votes are appearing for doom metal but they may just be blind voting because that's what the first two albums were.
666sharon666 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
I'd heard he'd stepped down as a live member, but I didn't realise that he wasn't going to play in the studio either.
adg211288 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
New Avatarium just arrived. I'll be playing it momentarily but got a bit of shock with it already:

Lief Edling does not play on it. Not even credited as a band member, though it still wrote the majority of the album except tracks 3 & 6.

adg211288 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
I like the new Avatarium songs released already, especially Into the Fire/Into the Storm. And I generally like their previous non-doom tracks like All I Was and Girl with the Raven Mask a lot (in fact those two are no doubt among my most played tracks of the band), so I'm getting pretty excited for this album, which at this point I'm not expecting to be too comparable, if at all.

I'll see tomorrow, Amazon is prepping the CD for shipment right now.

Nightfly wrote:
more than 2 years ago
I think this is a great album. Whilst i don't rate it quite as high as you I'm expecting to prefer it to the new Avatarium album who seem to be moving further away from doom from the bits I've heard so far of the new album but we shall see.
666sharon666 wrote:
more than 2 years ago
Had a listen yesterday, I liked it a lot. Hopefully Avatarium is just as good if not better.

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