Weakling
Dead as Dreams


4.5
superb

Review

by Robin Kasen USER (3 Reviews)
August 17th, 2007 | 307 replies | 25,305 views


Release Date: 2000 | Tracklist

Review Summary: With this album Weakling have proven that USBM can stand strong, even in the most inadequate genre of black metal. Dead As Dreams is a rather unknown jewel that deserves a place in every true black metal fan’s arsenal.

7 of 7 thought this review was well written

USBM has gained itself a reputation as the worst type of black metal. This is due to the stereotype that USBM is (for the most part) instrumentally challenged, poor in musical quality, cheap substitutes of their renowned European brothers, lacking efficient drum quality and guitar riffs, and overall minimalists nature. For the most part I can agree in saying that this is true, but not when the band in question is San Francisco’s quintet Weakling.

Weakling bring on a style of progressive black metal that uses the suicidal nature of your common USBM bands and takes it to a new level of progressive intensity. Their production is raw, but not to the point where it alters the experience of the music. Their songs range from ten minutes to twenty minutes each, and they do have the tendency to drag (but not as much as you would probably think). Trust me when I say that this is not your quick and simple listening experience, for each song is packed with intense and emotional extremes in practically every aspect of it’s cutting-edge sound.

With the opening riffs of Cut Their Grain And Place Fire Therein you will immediately get a feel for atmospheric intensity Weakling has to deliver. The opening drums are sharp and heavy and the vocals reminisce that off a dying man crying out in agony. Despite the fact that the vocals are easily the weakest part of the music, they fit the vivid imagery that the music gives. That image is that of intense internal suffering. Weakling also manage to pull off some amazing (and long) guitar solos without ruining the intensity of the music or giving it that DragonForce cheese vibe. I must also mention the perfection in the layering of the guitar that gives the music such an intense, inhuman vibe. It is chilling right down to the bone.

For what Weakling looses with overtime they make up with dynamics that require a dedicated and able listener to comprehend. Naturally, if you do not like long songs, you will have a hard time getting into this album. For moments that seem like there is no point could drive an unable listener to skipping to the next track. It’s usually a lot easier for listeners who are familier with this style and/ or the album itself to become entranced in it’s malevolent beauty. The title track, Dead As Dreams, for example contains some of the greatest highlights of the album, such as it’s epic and mind numbing four minute intro, but also contains some points of extreme dragging, mainly in the fourteen to eighteen or so part of the twenty minute long song.

Cut Their Grain And Place Fire Therein and This Entire F**ing Battlefield are by far the most driven songs on the album. On This Entire F**ing Battlefield you can really get a feel for some of the keyboards used (since they’re usually drowned out by the guitar otherwise). The keyboard symphonies are beautiful. It is my personal favorite off the album. By this point I should mention that Weakling is definitely not one of your slow and depressive black metal bands. No One Can Be Called As A Man While He’s Dying has some of the most doom-esque elements in it with the bass breakdown (which truly shows off the skills of the otherwise rather obscure bassist).

Weakling can show that they mellow out with the seventeen minute closing track Disasters In The Sun, which takes a very dark, funeral doom approach with it’s epic intro and outro. The song allows me to see the connection Weakling obviously has with the funeral doom metal pioneers Asunder. However, just like No One Can Be Called As A Man While He’s Dying, the song is not all slow and depressive. With this album Weakling have proven that USBM can stand strong, even in the most inadequate genre of black metal. Dead As Dreams is a rather unknown jewel that deserves a place in every true black metal fan’s arsenal. It is my definition of epic.

Pros
* Intense, dark, and emotional atmospheres.
* Amazing guitar and drum work.
* Great structures and progressive buildups/ breakdowns.
* Puts all other USBM in it’s place.


Cons
* Can drag on and on in a few places (mainly the self-titled track).
* (Nearly) impossible to find.


My final grade: 4.5/5


user ratings (212)
Chart.
4.2
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
robin2220
August 17th 2007



569 Comments


This is my first review so please give me some helpful feedback.

Thank you.

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2007



16242 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Fuck yeah Weakling rules.

robin2220
August 17th 2007



569 Comments


I know. This and Wolves In The Throne Room's Diadem Of 12 Stars are extremly good albums you should listen too. I also like Leviathan but not as much.

blackmilk
August 17th 2007



584 Comments


Nothing is "intense" about Weakling.

jrowa001
August 17th 2007



8750 Comments


great review. this seems interesting. im not a huge black metal fan (maybe 15-20 albums i actually like). are they any similar to enslaved cuz of the progressive elements

robin2220
August 17th 2007



569 Comments


No not really. They do not approach it the same way Enslaved does. You would have to check it out for yourself.

I'm going to go on the assumption blackmilk is an elitist who doesn't know what he's talking about.

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2007



16242 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

lol

blackmilk
August 17th 2007



584 Comments


Thanks for the commentary, Crysis.

In case you didn't know, positivity doesn't matter.

robin2220
August 17th 2007



569 Comments


Just ignore him Crysis. I highly suggest you listen to this if you like Leviathan. I am
eager to hear what you think about it seeing as you're a black metal fan.This Message Edited On 08.17.07

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2007



16242 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

I highly suggest you listen to this if you like Leviathan. I am eager to hear what you think about it seeing as you're a black metal fan.


Sure, I'll give it a listen...

blackmilk
August 17th 2007



584 Comments


Haha, I'm glad you are basing your knowledge of what I listen to by the albums that I've rated on this site.

Aww he edits his comment. Cute!This Message Edited On 08.17.07

south_of_heaven 11
August 17th 2007



5433 Comments


Good review. Word of advice though: don't bold the song titles. I used to do that but it's kinda fell out of favor on this site. Quotes around the song names is all you need.

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2007



16242 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Aww he edits his comment. Cute!


Yes I did, because I don't want to fill this thread with arguing.

robin2220
August 17th 2007



569 Comments


You can listen to Cut Their Grain and Place Fire Therein here: http://www.myspace.com/weaklingg

Good review. Word of advice though: don't bold the song titles. I used to do that but it's kinda fell out of favor on this site. Quotes around the song names is all you need.

Thanks, I will remember that.

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2007



16242 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

"Cut Their Grain and Place Fire Therein" is a great song.

robin2220
August 17th 2007



569 Comments


Like I said, the vocals are not that good, but when you really get into the album they do not take away much from the music.

Crysis
Staff Reviewer
August 17th 2007



16242 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Really wish I could find a hard copy of this in the store.

robin2220
August 17th 2007



569 Comments


You may have to resort to downloading it like I did.

blackmilk
August 17th 2007



584 Comments


The following are the worst sentences. Most of them don't make sense and need rephrasing:

USBM has gained a reputation in black metal as being the worst of the kind.


This is due to it’s stereotype that USBM


Weakling bring on a style of progressive black metal that uses the suicidal nature of your common USBM bands and takes it to a level of progressive intensity seen only by a small handful in it’s respective genre


Sentence needs broken up.


Their songs range from ten and a half minutes to twenty and half minutes each


Or you could just say "Their songs range from ten to twenty minutes".

It’s usually a lot easier for listeners who are family with they style and/ or the album itself to become entranced in it’s malevolent beauty


The symphonies are beautiful even when the song is at it’s heaviest and most chaotic parts.


You seriously need to stop using the word "intense," which pops up at least seven times in your review.

Also, you frequently confuse the "it's" contraction with the possessive "its".







Brain Dead
August 17th 2007



1150 Comments


[quote=robin]I'm going to go on the assumption blackmilk is an elitist who doesn't know what he's talking about.[/quote]
Couldn't be more wrong. He's one of the best reviewers I know, and listens to music from a huge variety of genres.



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