Five out of Five Stars
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This amazing album is the most recent in the My Dying Bride catalogue. This seminal Doom Metal band has been through some artistic experimentation but currently is riding high on a return to form. This new album is the perfection of their original style, and is the kind of return to splendor that is only dreamed of by many bands that might seem to have more stature in the annals of heavy metal but in fact much less talent. My Dying Bride demonstrates on this album a perfect balance of power and finesse, which of all Doom Metal bands I have only seen wielded by themselves.
Every track on this album is a powerful classic, and all instrumentation is absolutely perfect with top-notch production values. This album is a masterpiece.
I will bring one track into the fore for this review, my favorite cut on the album: 'My Wine in Silence', which is the most mournfully beautiful romantic lament, one of the most poignant love songs in heavy metal (or rock'n'roll, for that matter) since my personal anthem 'Symptom of the Universe' (Black Sabbath, 'Sabotage', 1975). This song has a calm and darkly uplifting ambience alternated with a powerful slow guitar groove that takes the listener through a sweet funeral of the mind, beautifully mournful. Please trust me when I tell you that you've never heard anything like it. Should I die, it WILL be played at my funeral before 'Symptom' finishes the service, before the live band and the mosh (during which my corpse will be crowd-surfed over the heads of the celebrants).
It will be severely difficult for this band to outdo this work, because it's simply state-of-the-art; it raises the bar for artistic flourish and inspired playing and songwriting for all of True Heavy Metal. That's how good it is.