DRACONIAN "A Rose For Apocalypse"

 •  Posted in: Kogaionon ReviewsRating: 0.95/1
DRACONIAN "A Rose For Apocalypse"
  • Album: A Rose For Apocalypse
  • Year: 2011
  • Label: NAPALM
  • Artist: 
  • Sweden

Goethe said: “The classic stays, the romantic disappears”... In the case of DRACONIAN, we can’t speak of an avangarde trend or experimental phases... DRACONIAN addresses all who began, grew up and did not forget that the classic Doom Metal was created by MY DYING BRIDE, PARADISE LOST, KATATONIA or ANATHEMA, but was successfully represented by other great bands, with a Gothic print, like THEATRE OF TRAGEDY (RIP) or TRISTANIA. Of course the list could go on with many other bands that released interesting albums of the same kind, but most of them were gone off the initial rails, experimenting either the mainstream line, either symphonic phases, alternative or even electro ones... DRACONIAN was from the beginning a band that mixed Doom Metal with Gothic Metal without any trend compromises, that did not give up pressing on the Dark pedal, the first four albums being recognized and appreciated by loads of fans. Their music is catchy, liked by the ear and the lyrics are another main characteristic of the DRACONIAN concept. A new appearance was expected, especially because the last one took place three years ago!

But let me take it chronologically if it’s about the new album... First, I’ve been offered to audition the track “The Last Hour Of Ancient Sunlight”... only an uninformed or ignorant person could say that he doesn’t find in this track’s structure many elements from “A Custodian Of Science”, one of the most beautiful Doom Death Metal sequences ever, written by Fred from OCTOBER TIDE (ex-KATATONIA). But in DRACONIAN, the Gothic dimension has a crucial importance, Lisa’s voice being an authentic driver for the Gothenburg sextet, so that their song sounds as melodic and lively as poetic! On the other hand, I like much Anders’s growl on this album, I believe it is his forte. The new video of this track appeared and the new concept seemed to get another outline, more perceptible and full of substance... In only a weekend, posted on YouTube, the video enjoyed over 15000 views, something that says much about the fans’ expectations...


The official album hasn’t been released yet, but I will try to describe it in few words... After the first listening, I didn’t know what to believe, it didn’t seem something new, something peculiar... only DRACONIAN, easy to recognize and appreciate, that didn’t start with mainstream phases or trendy hipstering (which is not a bad thing, if it’s done in a peculiar way)... but in 2011 it’s not enough only being loyal to a musical style... at least that’s what I’ve been believing... the vintage flavour started taking over me starting with the second audition, when the tracks like “End Of Rope” or “Deadlight” turned me back many many years ago, in other times, forgotten and somehow hidden in a dusty closet of my ignorant habits... In “Elysian Nights”, the communication of the two contrasting voices dominate passages imbued with dreamy prints, like ballads, in a background created to be as airy as Epic and atmospheric, that make the song a real Gothic Metal jewel! I have also found in “Dead World Assembly” the old THEATRE OF TRAGEDY, where “The Beauty and the Beast” concept is once again at peak, Anders’s voice being extremely aggressive but perfect for these sonorities! “A Phantom Dissonance” begins with BATHORY-like guitar riffs after which gets back to Epic elements, poetic ones, filled with atmosphere, where Lisa’s voice communicates smartly with the guitars, placed like on a stave to obediently follow the impressive melodic line. I also like the guitar game from “The Death Of Hours”, similar to KATATONIA, but also the sad flavour from “The Quiet Storm”, maybe the album’s most dreary and introverted sequence... There would be much to say, including about the violin that we poignantly hear on “Wall Of Sighs”, the discreet keyboard that outlines this unique atmospheric dimension... I either grew old, either DRACONIAN reminded me (also) with this album not to forget where I came from and that beautiful, melodic music, filled with emotion and post-romantic melancholy exists only in beautiful spirits! Maybe both.

I repeat, there’s nothing new here, nothing that surprises or satisfies the desires of the ones seeking novelties... but there is DRACONIAN, a band I raise my hat to! In 10 tracks, meaning 65 minutes, I managed (true, not from the first time) to break myself from the ordinary and virtually but retrospectively browse through cobwebbed pages with memories about I‘ve never thought I will ever mention! The king is dead, long live the king!


Audio track here: