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Swarm Chain - Looming Darkness

Swarm Chain
Looming Darkness
by Metal Wim at 17 May 2022, 9:00 PM

Italy is not really a country that one would associate with Doom Metal. But there you have it, SWARM CHAIN are defying that logic and are letting us know that they are exactly that. These guys are all experienced musicians and started writing music in 2019. At first it was just for the fun of it, but soon they felt they were onto something solid, so they decided to actually form a band. SWARM CHAIN was actually formed in 2020, and that’s when the real work started. Finding a record company and recording their music took up most of their time and now, halfway through 2022, we are blessed with the release of the debut album “Looming Darkness”.

Just to make it clear from the start; this is Heavy Doom Metal, so the tempo’s are not as slow as that they only have to touch the strings of the guitars once per fifteen seconds. No, you so get proper riffs, normal if slow drumming, very atmospheric bass playing ang extremely tasteful growls and grunts. Yes, I do feel that such is the proper description, as it fits, time and time again. Even the few higher pitched screams and clean vocals that are thrown in at just the right moments add to the feel of listening to a very well balanced album.

SWARM CHAIN might have scored with “Looming Darkness”, they haven’t been able to wow me just yet. As I mentioned it all fits, but it’s also very easy to predict what’s going to happen. They have played it a tad too safe, if you ask me. Not only in the songs, as none of them has any points where the band decides to go off the rails, paint outside the box. But also with the sound, as everything sounds too even, too straight. There are no points where it all goes haywire, where the music dares to explode, or even become very intricate. No highs, no lows, all exactly in the middle.

Now, I know “Looming Darkness” is just a debut album, but if SWARM CHAIN are in this game to be noticed, they will have to be more adventurous. Dare to go stupidly slow, excruciating intimate, but also extremely heavy with proper outbursts of anger, angst, depression, fear and loathing. That is when the audience will really take notice, when the listeners will become fans. So here’s to hoping that these Italians have those traits in them next time.

Songwriting: 7
Musicianship: 7
Memorability: 7
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

1. Hunters
2. Worms
3. Witch Of The Woo
4. Looming Darkness
5. Codex Gigas
6. Almost Nothing
Emanuelle Cirilli: Vocals (Growls)
Daniele Mandelli: Guitar
Riccardo Tonoli: Guitar
Paolo Veluti: Bass, Vocals (Clean)
Daniele Valseriati: Drums
Record Label: Punishment 18 Records


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