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*Shels - Sea Of The Dying Dhow CD (album) cover




Experimental/Post Metal

4.12 | 40 ratings

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Vincent Hulin
4 stars Sea of the Dying Dhow brings some new identity to the metalcore genre, a rich mixture between heavy, doomy riffs and softer moments. While the riffs are slow and distorted, they are also catchy and highly melodical. Listen to "The White Umbrella-Part II", which trades off between lush acoustic sessions and heavy-metal explosions. The acoustic and softer sections on this album are gorgeous, without being influenced by classical or folk.

SOTDD does not fall into clichés of most post-metal oversaturated repetition. A piece like "Water-part I" is the key example, a modern rock ballad sounding like a powerchord-heavy anthem. The band's willingness not to fall into the pitfall of post-rock trappings - based on constant rise and fall of dynamics- is admirable. Listen to the explosion of distorted guitars in the middle of opener "The Conference of the Birds", that smoothly slides to an acoustic crescendo which builds into a reprise of the distorted section and a barrage of strings, brass, and heavy octave guitar work.

Shels has succeeded to integrate some metalcore aesthetics into a progressive rock style. They perform a progressive sound without being syrupy, without entering realms of unnecessary pretension. Shels does not embrace the arty atmosphere of a band like Isis. Every piece of music is perfectly arranged. Shels combines worlds of complete originality and typical clichés, a successful formula.

That definitely deserves a full 4-star rating, impatiently expecting their second album..

Vincent Hulin | 4/5 |


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