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Darkwater - Where Stories End CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

3.70 | 99 ratings

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5 stars You know that album in your head, the one you just don't have the talent to make real, well it appears that Swedens Darkwater have been rummaging around in my head because this is as close to the music i would make given the talent. Opener "Breathe" is everything an an album opener should be. There is some dazzling guitar work and a rock solid bass & drum combination. Baths' vocals have just the right melodic tone to complement the music. Its all suitably Epic in structure and tone. Epic is a fine word for the bands output. Second track "Why I Bleed" has an eastern tinged opening before unleashing the sort of pomp you associate with SAGA or MAGNUM, just that bit heavier. "Into the Cold" has a great guitar/keyboard dynamic and a truly fantastic mid song instrumental."Fools Utopia" starts with a nod towards Dream Theater and has an eastern tinged keyboard sound. "Queen of the night" is a real highlight, great guitarwork and album highlight drum work. The real problem this song has is the stupidly infectious chorus... If ahab had a hook this big he'd of landed Moby Dick. Any sort of serious airplay could catapult the band into the stratosphere. "Blink of an Eye" is the Lyrical highpoint of the album. Recalling Rage era Queensryche as the musical bombast layers over a bleak tale of domino effect dispair. "Fields of Sorrow" has another excellently bleak lyric and is probably the most musically varied song on the album. There is a beauty/beast mechanic within the music which works incredibly well. "Without a Sound" is the other outstanding single on the album. A powerful rhythm section drives the song and the band again show an ear for a catchy chorus. Album closer "Walls of Deception" is a suitably epic end to the album. The Keyboard work is beautifully understated and it provides a fine end to the album. Taken as a body of work its very hard to fault this album. Technically superb, with a real feel for melody and a fine vocal performance from Henrik Bath. Both Drum and Bass are used to enhance the songs and drive them along with real force whilst Holmbergs' Keyboards are just about perfect. There are some dazzling guitar solos but never at the expense of the song. In fact this is a band who seem to know that the song is more important that any flashes of virtuoso playing. As a result you have 9 beautifully crafted songs that never outstay their welcome. It can be said that they are not pushing the boundaries of the genre but that would be missing the point. Yes the influences are pretty easy to spot. Queensryche, Savatage, Dream Theater and Fates Warning are all nestled in their collective record collections and it lends the album an air of familiarity. However, all of those bands would be more than happy to release an album of this sustained quality. If they can get themselves onto the right shows and support gigs they have every chance of becoming massive which, quite frankly, is what they deserve on the back of this album. As i said at the start, this is pretty much the sort of music thats in my head (when the voices shut up) and as such this is the best Prog Metal album i've heard since Savatage were telling tales of DT Jesus. 5 stars all the way.
devox | 5/5 |


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