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My Dying Bride - Turn Loose The Swans CD (album) cover


My Dying Bride


Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.14 | 77 ratings

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Eetu Pellonpaa
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
5 stars This album is the greatest achievement of My Dying Bride for me. The soothing presence of violin and synthesizer has been fully adapted to the group's sound, and the shifts from clean vocals to growling both enhances the contrasts in power dynamics and allow sense of dialogue on some occasions. The composition quality is best from the band's albums that I have yet heard, and they form a solid aural voyage to realms of romanticized aggression and gloominess.

The "Sear Me" anthem from earlier record has been arranged as a long ethereal album introduction, revealing instantly the more tender new emphasis of the group. Though the piano lines are quite primitive, the intro manages to create nice feelings, leading then to series of really powerful "art metal symphony" songs. "Your River" starts to flow from echoing calm guitar string pickings, crashing then to rapids of three forceful riff sequences. After some neat transitional phases the slow solemn descending theme for vocals and long guitar chords starts to recite their sad tales. The guitar themes presented on the beginning of the song are later revisited on the composition, after some adventures in doom metal styled still life from an oppressing winter landscape. I personally like these slow paced glances, and rejoice the lack of "wild guitar solos", which would not have suited in my opinion to these carefully constructed song or the solid integrity of the music. I have understood a swan being considered as a "Songless Bird", and a song with this name follows. Quite stoned drowning in doom metal swamp is evident after some synthesizer introductions, leading later to a very beautiful redemption on medieval appearing ascending motifs. Knife sharp cut to a powerful trashing works convincingly, creating a song that circles pleasantly the extremities of the group's musical stylistic palette. "The Snow in My Hand" continues this philosophy, by starting as contemplative mellow yearning, then more sinister aspects blowing over with full throttle, and only for a moment resting at melodically wonderful eye of a storm. This composition returns to the beginning's theme with touching melodic support from violin on circular form, a concept which is also adopted to the whole album.

The two next long songs coronize this wonderful album with their melodic beautifulness and determination on slow tempo nightmare dreaming. "The Crown of Sympathy" evolves neatly over a large dramatic curve and explores some very ethereal ghastly territories on theatrical narrative sequences. The title track of the album continues the flow of music logically with really wonderful melodic guitar and violin theme merging with deeper aggressive phases. The conclusion after heavy guitar construction manoeuvres leaves a touching impression of real sorrow and experienced human drama. Final track "Black God" closes the album with similar methods as the record was opened, leaving behind an awesome record of gloomy moody music for the moonlit winter nights, and an album I personally consider as masterpiece of heavier rock music with serious attempts towards self-expressionism and controlled building of sceneries for people to behold in awe. I also possess it as an artefact from my own personal history, this nostalgia relevant only for my own experience.

I did not listen much to the following releases of the group, except from few tracks and scarce run-throughs on some parties many years ago. I remember both "The Angel and The Dark River" and "The Light at The End of The World" being quite promising, and I might return to study them later if the inspiration for such listening should sparkle. However some of my tests from mid 1990's and 21st century releases of this group were not totally convincing.

Eetu Pellonpaa | 5/5 |


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