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On disc: Darkwater

Calling The Earth To Witness - Philip Thelen - 8 stars
Where Stories End - Mike Thompson - 9 stars

Where Stories End

Where Stories End
(Ulterium / Nightmare Records - 2010)

Swedish progressive melodic metal quintet Darkwater present here their sophomore album Where Stories End. Admittedly I'm not a big listen of prog as I find that a lot of bands tend to concentrate on showing the technical proficiency of the members rather than constructing worthwhile, enjoyable songs. From the onset of this album it is clear that Darkwater do not fall into this trap.
The songs are cleverly constructed, well-written and extremely well-played with a great balance between the instruments. There is also a lot of passion oozing from every section of this opus, not least in the warm and incredibly talented vocals of Henrik Bth. In several parts they struck me as being very similar to Legend Of The Bone Carver-era Pyramaze, which is no bad thing in my opinion. However, generally the band seems to have its own musical identity and have crafted a hugely enjoyable piece of melodic metal that deserves the attention of the metal world at large.
Prog may be dominated by heavyweights in the likes of Dream Theater and Symphony X, but I felt that Darkwater's incredibly accomplished album to be far more palatable than any of the better known bands acclaimed offerings. One of the better prog releases I've heard.

9 stars

Mike Thompson


Calling The Earth To Witness

Calling The Earth To Witness
(Ulterium Records - 2007)

Another Swedish prog metal band is out to conquer the world.... Darkwater. The guys know how to play and have a charismatic singer, this is the basis for their prog metal band. Calling The Earth To Witness is the debut of this Swedish quintet and they can keep up with the big names in the genre. The album has a great sound, is played extremely well and shows variety.
The album intro confused me in the beginning.... Coz within 32 seconds they fade through the different songs. Then they kick off with Evergrey-like prog metal. The songs vary between 6 min. and 12 minutes, but the longer ones can't keep my attention. But the true prog metal fan won't have a problem to follow them. Highlights are the long instrumental passages which present different beats, rhythms, riffs and solos.
Songs like All Eyes On Me, Again and In My Dreams show the band best and at Habit singer and guitarist Henrik Bath can show his talent.
A good album which is fun to listen to and which I can recommend to everybody who liked prog music!

8 stars

Philip Thelen
(translation: Claudia Ehrhardt)


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