Death Has No Dominion
Death Has No Dominion


4.0
excellent

Review

by Nash J. CONTRIBUTOR (34 Reviews)
June 25th, 2014 | 47 replies | 6,531 views


Release Date: 06/17/2014 | Tracklist

Review Summary: There’s nothing left to see...you know you’re never going back again.

There is a certain beauty about the ocean that can best be observed from the shore. As a child living on the coast of Southern California, I would spend hours at a time standing on a quiet beach during a hot Summer day, admiring the simple elegance of the ocean as I dig my feet into the sand and listen to the chirps of seagulls as they soar into the unknown. From the shore, the ocean appears to be calm and simple; an illusion that masks the unfathomable depths below that house more life, both gorgeous and terrifying, than will ever be discovered by man. Not too dissimilar from this is Death Has No Dominion, a Danish two-piece ambient folk outfit that aim to recreate the experience of gazing off into the endless ocean on a bright Summer day.

The elegance of Death Has No Dominion’s self-titled debut is found in its simplicity. Minimal instrumentation and softly-sung vocals create gorgeous atmospheres that reflect the heart of nature. Tranquil ukulele melodies place the listener into a trance, guiding the listener as he or she embarks on an out-of-body experience through lush forests and icy plains. The pacing of the album is slow and contemplative, allowing the listener’s mind to wander aimlessly as one song seamlessly melds into the next. Bjarke Niemann’s murmured, slightly off-key vocal delivery is by no means great, but the softness and sincerity of it fits with the ethereal nature of the music. While his poetic lyrics add to the music's serenity, his voice shines brightest on tracks “Uproar In Heaven” and “No Return,” in which he chants and hums quietly as the ambient melodies take center stage. Death Has No Dominion is an aural journey through the imagination of two young musicians armed with ukuleles.

Although each song on Death Has No Dominion is similar in structure and rhythm, the album is by no means boring. Each track paints a similar picture, but conveys a subtly different tone from the one preceding it. The slight nuances of “Uproar In Heaven,” such as its exotic melody and heavy tribal beat, make it profoundly different than previous track “Reaching the Shore” and the rest of the album likewise. “Coming Like a Hurricane” is an easy standout, serving as the most emotional and gripping track on the entire album. The song begins in a rather somber fashion, starting off with harmonizing ukulele strumming and mournful lyrics. Yet, as the song progresses, it becomes increasingly powerful and uplifting. Ghostly melodies delicately burst and soar in the distance over the rest of the song, painting a breathtakingly vivid picture of a colorful environment alive with all sorts of life. Unfortunately, the short length of “Coming Like a Hurricane” highlights the biggest problem with the album. On average, each song spans three-to-four minutes in length, stopping dead in their tracks just as soon as the listener has become invested. While this flaw is quite disappointing and affects nearly every song, Death Has No Dominion makes up for this by having a steady, cohesive flow. In fact, the entire album feels like a thirty-four minute song.

Death Has No Dominion are as humble as they are ambitious, crafting emotional atmospheres and painting beautiful pictures with use of little more than two ukuleles and vocals that range from mumbled poetry to harmonious hums. This idea is not new, but here, its execution is so earnest that one can’t help but be intrigued. Death Has No Dominion places me back onto the shore I stood on as a child, staring into the ocean and admiring the fallacy of its magnificent simplicity.



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user ratings (9)
Chart.
3.6
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Judio!
Contributing Reviewer
June 24th 2014



4636 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I thoroughly enjoyed this album, and fans of minimalist ambient/folk should definitely get some
enjoyment out of this as well.

Album is streaming here:
http://www.avclub.com/article/stream-new-record-death-has-no-dominion-whole-week-205584

Digging: Wolves in the Throne Room - Celestite

laughingman22
June 25th 2014



1319 Comments


cool review

Digging: Funkadelic - One Nation Under a Groove

Judio!
Contributing Reviewer
June 25th 2014



4636 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks man

manosg
June 25th 2014



5653 Comments


Excellent review man. Somebody make this dude contributor already!

Digging: Donovan - Sunshine Superman

ScuroFantasma
June 25th 2014



1087 Comments


Great review dude

Digging: Equilibrium - Erdentempel

Judio!
Contributing Reviewer
June 25th 2014



4636 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Thanks guys! Manosg you're too kind! :]

ExplosiveOranges
June 25th 2014



1313 Comments


How this man is still not a contributor, I do not know. Pos'd from the bottom of my heart.

Digging: Seven Lions - Worlds Apart

unromance
June 25th 2014



55 Comments


Just checked out the stream// I know what I'm going to be listening to for the rest of the week. This sounds great.

Very good review also

Judio!
Contributing Reviewer
June 25th 2014



4636 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"How this man is still not a contributor, I do not know. Pos'd from the bottom of my heart"

That means a lot man, thank you! :sniffle:

Jacquibim
Contributing Reviewer
June 25th 2014



13348 Comments


judio for emeritus

Digging: Fallujah - The Flesh Prevails

Relinquished
June 25th 2014



24373 Comments


why is that band name wrong

NorthernSkylark
June 25th 2014



1285 Comments


And death shall have NOOOO dominion - lol those bandnames

Digging: Parquet Courts - Sunbathing Animal

emester
June 25th 2014



1966 Comments


seriously Judio, how the fuck aren't you a contributor yet?

Digging: Vaura - The Missing

SowingSeason
Staff Reviewer
June 25th 2014



15260 Comments


Judio!: Excellent review (pos'd), you got me interested. This sounds like it will be incredibly
cathartic based on the samples I've listened to.

Edit: (to your cheering section) - He can (and should) apply for contributor when the moderators re-
open the application thread. A select few have been independently promoted, but to my knowledge
that's rare.

Digging: Nick Cave and The Bad Seeds - Abattoir Blues/The Lyre of Orpheus

Judio!
Contributing Reviewer
June 25th 2014



4636 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

@Emester Well I applied back in January, but I don't think i had enough good reviews under my belt to be promoted at the
time. The past few months I've been trying extra hard to improve my writing though, so I appreciate the compliment.

@Sowingseason Thank you man, it's certainly a cathartic album, but is a lot more relaxing than what you might expect.

jmh886
June 25th 2014



788 Comments


COOL BAND NAME

Hopelust
June 25th 2014



943 Comments


That band name is prime.

This also sounds grand. I, too, am a fan of staring out onto the ocean.

Judio!
Contributing Reviewer
June 25th 2014



4636 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ain't nothing else like it, huh?

Hopelust
June 25th 2014



943 Comments


Yeah, especially considering I live nowhere near the ocean. It's pretty surreal for me when it occurs.

laughingman22
June 25th 2014



1319 Comments


lets start a 'judio for contributor' petition



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