Review Summary: Cradle's "gift" is just another cash grab.
“Evermore Darkly” is an inconsistent release from one of the most inconsistent bands in extreme metal, Cradle of Filth. The EP serves as a fallible compilation ranging from demos to some poorly executed rehashed ideas. The first track features the English actor Doug Bradley doing a narration of the “Well to Hell” hoax from the 1990’s. His attempt to recreate the Siberian myth does not sound convincing however, creating a dull two minute intro to the EP. “Thank Your Lucky Scars” is the second track that shares a strong resemblance with Cradle’s albums “Thornography” and “Godspeed on the Devil’s Thunder”. The prominent use of keyboards and an orchestra highlight guitarist Paul Allender’s groovy and dynamically thrashy elements, while Dani Filth’s use of mid-ranged vocals and blood-curdling lyrics cement this track into being the obvious highlight on the EP. However, these strong moments don’t help break the feeling that you've heard this song before which begs the question, does it make the entirety of “Evermore Darkly” worth buying or even listening to?
Three demo versions of songs are taken from the 2010 album “Darkly Darkly Venus Aversa”. Lacking a decent production, poor vocals, and a muddy sound consequently make these songs weaker than their finalized versions. Another track from the previous album is the extended length of “Lilith Immaculate” which is two minutes longer than the original, featuring an orchestral section that unfortunately does not fit in delicately. The remix of “Forgive Me Father (I Have Sinned)” is done by Rob Coggiano from Anthrax who incorporates a trance beat along with a comical use of Dani Filth’s singing making it another pointless and unenjoyable song.
“Summer Dying Fast” is an orchestral version of one of the classic Cradle songs from their first album “The Principle of Evil Made Flesh”. The use of an orchestra and choir is generally a good idea, however its incorporation fails to sound like a convincing re-master and in no way reinvigorates the original song. The gentle but dense sound of the strings also don’t mix well with the viciousness of the guitars. In addition, the removal of most of the vocals leaves an empty song with a meaningless orchestra extinguishing the unique feeling the song used to have.
This release is a testament to the dwindling fan base. “Thank your Lucky Scars” isn't strong enough to carry the rest of the rehashed ideas that were scrapped together from their 2010 album. And the hastily written tracks only bring this EP further down into the depths of disappointment. Some die hard fans might appreciate “Evermore Darkly”, but most will stay away and will be right to do so.