Cradle of Filth, originating from Suffolk, England, has been a notorious name in the metal world since their debut. Way too much controversy over the genre has been attachted to the name. Since their debut in 1994 with the Principle of Evil Made Flesh
, Cradle of Filth has become somewhat of a household name in the underground metal world, whether good or bad. Their 1996 followup Dusk & Her Embrace
brought htem from a cult following to a full on fanbase. In '98, Cruelty & the Beast
had only furthered their career. That takes us to this, Midian
, their 2000 release. The heaviest of all their releases, this arguably their best album. I'm a little pressed for time, so if you're looking for a more detailed bio check something official or my Nymphetamine
The album starts off gradually with the best intro track Cradle has ever released. At the Gates of Midian
has atmospheres that fit the album perfectly. It gives a sensation of being epic, while strangely haunting. It leads directly into Cthulhu Dawn
, my favorite track on the album. It's a good display on the heaviness achieved in the record. The lead riffs and high pitched vocals are more apparent than ever, but the band seems to mold them into a heavier sound seemlessly. The song itself is fast moving and never relents. The vocals are incredible, with Dani producing sounds that are so fast and high that when blended with the music produce an evil yet hard-hitting song that could gain respect from fans of all metal genres. The themes and complexity are mostly contained for the entire duration. an excellent way to display the upcoming music on Midian. It rolls on to Saffron's Curse
. It steadilt kicks off with keyboards and slow drumming beats with Dani's low singing. It breaks out into a higher sound strongly reminiscent of Dusk & Her Embrace
, but evolves into the heavier Midian
sounds that the album follows. Most of the song is based around the intro style with the drums/keyboards.vocals combo. After about three minutes it goes to only synth which provides a slow background with some of the wierdest noises I've ever heard Dani make. The softer guitars come in and I'm strongly reminded of a Gothic Romance
. That sounds is combined with the main heavy section and forms an amazing sound that's melodic and flowing, but as I said, the album never really gives up (loving them blast beats :D ).
And who could be without Death Magick for Adepts
. The inro is nothing special to listen to. Once the main section comes in with Dani and the bass, I get excited. It stays with the sound but ends up with brutality x1000. They base the melodic and soft sounds around that basic sound and it pays off huge. It flows with an excellent rhythm and is one of my favorites. With the aptly titled Lord Abortion
coming up next, things slow down a little bit. This tracks emphasizes the rhythm more than anything, and has less of the lead riffs than any of the other songs. If just the pure brutality was what they were going for, than I guess this song would practically make the album (why does it feel like I'm saying "this is heavy" way too much?). Dani kind of shouts at parts and is kind of unsettling. With Amor E Morte
we get a slight break from the theme of the album. While keeping the same atmosphere and and feeling, it goes back to the familiar melodies and complexity of their past works. It has nice flowing speed that Dani's voice accent well and has background synth that for some reason gives off an upbeat feeling. The highlight of this song is probably the guitar solo. The fifty-second shred is played by both guitarists (they switch half way through). It's not the most complex mad crazy solo ever, but it could hold it's own (especially when there are no other solos on the record :naughty:). It keeps with the upbeat feelingand leads right into the rolling rhythm section with probably the only traces of the Midian
heaviness in the entire song. This track may be a turn off at first, but give it a few spins and I'm sure many will grow to like it.
Creatures That Kissed in Cold Mirrors
breaks from the music to provide the traditional instrumental track. This song has absolutely nothing to it. Just some basic sounds from whatever. It never really gets going, just stays light and eerie sounding. I suppose in the longrun it helps the upcoming music seem even better, but there's really no reason to sit through it. Following this is the most popular from the album, Her Ghost in the Fog
. Holy hell is this song overrated. It is one of the most flowing songs and has some of the better melodies, but for some reason it just doesn't do it for me. It's quite cool to hear Dani go from insanely low pitch talking to his high-pitched shrieking. There are the parts With the low gyutars and the sudden bursts of keyboard sounds, but those are the only parts I can really get into. Satanic Mantra
comes next. Man, this song is pointless on so many levels. It starts with one guy chanting some lines of text, and each time they go throught it, one more guy joins in. It makes no sense at all.
But after this we progress to Tearing the Veil From Grace
which starts with some basic and catchy choir singing. That singing keeps up for nearly all of the song. Most of the track is based around the sound they produced, but does explode with random heaviness every once in a while providing sweet relief. It has the speed and lead riffs similar to Cthulhu Dawn
and the female backing vocals of Amor E Morte
but isn't as good as either of those. It's more atmosphere than anything else, but is still a cool track. The drumming gets my attention for some reason. The album draws to a close with Tortured Soul Asylum
. It begins with a funny deep voice saying something about how he yearns for Midian. Some sweet guitar riffs come in afterward, and the vocals pick up with a steady beat. They all combine into something that just seems like an album closer. They repeat the name 'Midian' over and over here. Dani does the shouting thing again, but his screaming is much preferred. By Cradle standards, this song could almost constitue being repetitive. It has good parts and riffs, but they just use variations on them and it gets old pretty quick.
I said this may be Cradle's best, and even though the last few tracks aren't the greatest, I really meant it. None of their other albums have been able to achieve a sound quite like this. Combining many of the melodic and still black metalish elements of Dusk & Her Embrace
with a new found brutality gave this band a whole new life, even though it was ten years into their career. This was the album that turned me from a Cradle of Filth hater to huge fan. I would recommend it to anyone looking to check the band out. And to the fans who don't have it already, you should probably get a psychological exam before going to your local music store.
Death Magick for Adepts
Amor E Morte
(but in reality, any of the first six songs would do)
Final Rating - 4.5/5
Not quite as media friendly as Nymphetamine
which I gave a 4, but is still better. Have a nice day.