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Decaying Days - The Unknown Beyond Award winner

Decaying Days
The Unknown Beyond
by Dave "That Metal Guy" Campbell at 25 November 2020, 9:37 AM

From their Bandcamp page, Melodic Death/Doom Metal band DECAYING DAYS states “many doors had to be passed for us to finally reach the point where we stand. Some of the infinite ways led to our second album becoming what it has become. Five paths, to be exact. Because it reflects the stories and lives of the band even more than the first album did. The sound you hear and the stories you are being told are a big part of our minds and souls. That's why we hope that you will come a little bit closer to us while listening - a little bit closer to the unknown beyond which awaits us all behind the countless doors that may still follow. Step right through, and listen.” “The Unknown Beyond” contains eight tracks.

“Aeons of Slumber” opens the album. It has a heavy sound, complete with harsh vocals and some melodies in the lead guitar passages. The more ambient passage that occupies the middle section of the song really allows some dark melodies to form. “A Distant Memory” opens with a heavy, melodic groove, and some nice lead breaks. The vocals are guttural, and have some moments of harmony as well, especially in the chorus. A darkness pervades the song, bringing the elements of Doom to life. All of the elements come crashing together at the end.

“Into your Eyes” opens with some charming guitar notes and some spoken words. The clean guitars combine with distorted ones to really round out a sense of doom. “I feel so alone, when I look into your eyes” he croons. This song is gut-wrenching. “Reflections” opens with a bit of a faster moving riff. Then come the clean guitars and some ambiance. It’s really quite alluring. They really turn it up in the chorus, with a combination of clean and harsh vocals, working with harmony. The ambient passages are brilliant. They take you away from the harsh realities of the album to a place where you want to be but for some reason can never find.

“Interlude” is just that…a four-minute interlude of acoustical guitars building this nice melody, but in the darkness. So far, this album has done a very good job at balancing these elements so well. At times you feel happy, and other times sad. “Time Takes Away” begins with a slower pace and harsh vocals. Once again, lead guitar notes provide that sense of sadness and despair. It’s in the chorus where they really nail the sound. “Falling Down” features more of those lovely lead and clean guitars, in contrast with the heavy sound. Just after the half-way mark, bass guitar leads a charge of atmospheric tones that is beautiful in its despondence.

“Unknown Beyond” begins with clean, longing vocals, and some clean guitar as well. A slow sound builds into a sulking beast of emotions. It waxes and wanes several times throughout, again providing a balance to the competing elements. As I mentioned a few times, what the album perhaps does best is balancing sounds of beauty with harsh sadness. Much of it comes from the various ways the various guitar techniques impact the album. It will take you on a ride through many different emotions, enveloping you into their world. Riding somewhere between INSOMNIUM and ENSHINE, DECAYING DAYS have turned your world upside down with “The Unknown Beyond” and established themselves as a major player in the Melodic Death/Doom Metal genre.

Songwriting: 9
Musicianship: 9
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Aeons of Slumber
2. A Distant Memory
3. Into your Eyes
4. Reflections
5. Interlude
6. Time Takes Away
7. Falling Down
8. Unknown Beyond
Lineup:
Manuel Klein – Vocals
Tobias Müller – Guitar, Vocals
Daniel Maurer – Guitar
Hannes Bürger – Bass
Nico Ehlers – Drums
Record Label: Timezone Records
     


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