My Dying Bride
Songs Of Darkness, Words Of Light


4.0
excellent

Review

by eggsvonsatan USER (8 Reviews)
June 15th, 2010 | 23 replies | 8,374 views


Release Date: 2004 | Tracklist


1 of 1 thought this review was well written

My Dying Bride Is:

Aaron Stainthorpe : Vocals
Andy Craighan : Guitar
Hamish Glencross : Guitar
Ade Jackson : Bass
Sarah Stanton : Keyboards
Shaun Steels : Drums

On their eighth studio album, MDB released a record that sounds as fresh and inventive as their debut. Songs of Darkness, Words of Light is the summation of everything MDB has created this far and then some. It’s darker, gloomier, and heavier than nearly anything else they’ve released. Considering that they’ve made quite a name for themselves over the years, I’m shocked that I seldom hear them mentioned in the metal community.

This album begins with TheWreckage of My Flesh, and might I say, it’s one of the best album openers I’ve ever heard. The first time I heard this song it was stuck in my head for a week. Imagine that, Doom Metal can be catchy, what a concept! The opening growls on this track sound like demons are escaping from the depths of your speakers. Soon enough, Aaron Stainthorpe’s somber, melancholic voice kicks in alongside a tribal drum pattern and a droning guitar rhythm. He is a key part of what makes this band so unique; I have never heard anyone sing quite like him. His voice is so crisp that is sends a cold tingle down your spine. The spoken word bits are very strange, however they seem to work well here. His lyrics tell the tale of everything that is dark and sinister about life and love.

“With utter loathing and scorn.
I was somehow born.
Strewn in black decay.
None shall I obey.
The wreckage of my flesh.
The nakedness of my death.”

While most of this album is slow, brooding, and treacherous, there are several upbeat moments, such as The Scarlet Garden. However, the up-tempo sections don’t make this album the masterpiece that it is, rather it’s MDB’s ability to make beautifully intricate music at such low speeds. The Scarlet Garden is still a great song. The strings and keyboards add so much texture and emotion here. I typically refrain from listening to bands with excessive keyboard use, but unlike the rest of them, MDB utilizes the keys appropriately so that they never feel unnecessary. Also, the keys a foreground instrument; they are there to create ambiance and texture. Each time I listen to this track I am amazed at how sincerely they convey emotion through their music.

A Doomed Lover is a perfect closer for this album. It starts out with some incredibly distorted droning chords alongside Aaron’s menacing tone of voice. He utilizes the best aspects of his vocal capabilities here, from his strenuous sigh to his malevolent spoken word voice. Finally the guitars carry out the song in a masterful duo that is both depressing and uplifting.

Never before has a doom band captivated me with such a song talent for songwriting. Each track is carefully crafted to perfection, and the album as a whole flows beautifully. The production here is crystal clear. Each instrument sounds like it’s being played right in front of you. There are no guitar virtuoso moments, no drum solos, and no meedely-meedely keyboard pieces, however each musician is on top of their game. Nothing stands out, but nothing is left behind. I’m particularly impressed by Shaun Steels. His drum patterns are seemingly simple although very creative and never repetitive. He knows when to shine and when to play a simple 4/4 pattern. That can be said for all of the musicians here. Instead of fighting with each other, they are very conscious of that the other is doing which allows for these songs to sound so well composed.

The only thing keeping this record from getting a higher rating is a few parts in the middle of the album that are a tad drawn out (My Whine in Silence). Other than that this album is highly overlooked, and a classic of the genre. MDB has pioneered a genre that they are the masters of in their own right. They convey incredible emotion and musicianship while never sounding cheesy or obnoxious.

“Closer I creep, toward my prize
The Blue Lotus lies before me
Her lips are full, red as blood
Moist as they invite me
Stoop I did to kiss those lips
In the glowing room
When suddenly, she did awake,
Her eyes filled with doom
From silks, her hands were round my neck
Escape there was no hope”
-The Blue Lotus



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user ratings (175)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
eggsvonsatan
June 15th 2010



1087 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I realized that this was lost in that big sputnik crash. I wrote it years ago, cut me some slack.

silkforcalde
June 15th 2010



404 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i love this album so much

silkforcalde
June 15th 2010



404 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

btw, you might wanna edit your review because MDB are cheesy as fuck!

eggsvonsatan
June 15th 2010



1087 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

cheesy enough to get a 4.5?

silkforcalde
June 15th 2010



404 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

cheesy isn't a bad thing, man, i love cheesy things

i still blast enthrone darkness triumphant when i'm feeling nostalgic and that defines cheese

eggsvonsatan
June 15th 2010



1087 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Yeah, I'll even rock Puritanical Euphoric Misanthropia from time to time.

Helvete
June 15th 2010



1354 Comments


im a huge My Dying Bride fan so obviously i enjoy this, but to be realistic its in the second half of the MDB food-chain

silkforcalde
June 15th 2010



404 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

nah man, this is the best one post 34.788% complete and probably their third or fourth best overall, definitely way better than like gods of the sun, the light at the end of the world, a line of deathless kings, and the newest one

Helvete
June 15th 2010



1354 Comments


The Dreadful Hours is by far the best post-38.788% complete album.

but yeah this is better than all the other new ones. For Lies I Sire was really disappointing

Voivod
Staff Reviewer
June 15th 2010



5610 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

This is their best work yet.-

Tremendous flow as a record, something missing from most of their records, even though individual songs are great.

Digging: Mekong Delta - In A Mirror Darkly

Apollo
June 15th 2010



10083 Comments


I enjoy me some doom metal so I will check this out

silkforcalde
June 15th 2010



404 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

The Dreadful Hours is alright, I guess, but it's not that great. I skip a lot of it. Particularly the horrible remake of The Return of the Beautiful. Why remake that? Martin's violin MADE that song. If all you have is keys, don't even bother.

Songs of Darkness, Words of Light is definitely MUCH better than The Dreadful Hours in every single way.

Helvete
June 15th 2010



1354 Comments


not the play the 'majority' card, but thats quite a bold statement you're making

and tbqh, if you find the keys on The Dreadful Hours intrusive and annoying (but somehow they're magically fine for this album...) then you're trying too hard

Buccaneer
June 15th 2010



692 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I hated this at first, but it's grown on me

But I agree with the above posters, this is one of MDB's worst (still good though

and Dreadful Hours > This

Good review dude, i remember reading it before

silkforcalde
June 15th 2010



404 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

what? lol. you mean play the "i'm retarded and i don't know what the fuck an opinion is" card.

Helvete
June 15th 2010



1354 Comments


yes that one.

quite frankly how you find this miles better than The Dreadful Hours i do not see, because this is basically The Dreadful Hours V. 2

glasswovensummer
June 15th 2010



17 Comments


album title scares the shit out of me

silkforcalde
June 15th 2010



404 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

because it's "the dreadful hours - the fixed version"

a full quarter of the dreadful hours is a dreadful remake of one of their best songs, that alone docks it some points

Helvete
June 15th 2010



1354 Comments


yeah the original is better, but I quite like the remake

silkforcalde
June 15th 2010



404 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

i don't see the point in the remake. it's pretty much the same song without the violin, which was the best part of the original song.



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