Cult Of Luna return with their seventh studio release, ‘A Dawn To Fear’, and it is undeniably their most breathtakingly impressive offering to date. 2013s ‘Vertikal’ and its companion EP, ‘Vertikal II’, were pretty stunning listens but this atmospheric sludge/progressive Metal six-piece have surpassed their achievements with this latest jewel of an album.
It’s heavy yet emotive and crushingly powerful, not through brutality but through the atmosphere and passion rammed into this eight track, seventy-nine minute offering and venturing into fresh territory with their approach to creativity.
Vocalist/guitarist and lead songwriter Johannes Persson comments: “We knew exactly the album we wanted to make, and that was the antithesis of everything we’ve done before. For pretty much every album there’s been a very concrete theme. We’ve known from the start the kind of story we wanted to tell, and I didn’t want that to be the case. I’ve seen a lot of subtle changes and patterns in my own behaviour and my own thinking the last couple of years, and I wanted this to be a completely spontaneous process. I just wanted to see what came out of me, and ‘A Dawn To Fear’ is the result of that.”
From opener, ‘The Silent Man’, to the closer, ‘The Fall’, you’ll find ‘A Dawn To Fear’ a well filled, very emotive album, especially the opening track which is powerfully melancholic. Some of the tracks are epic in their time scale, half of which clock up between ten and fifteen minutes duration, all very well filled too, creating intriguing, sometimes harrowing mental journeys and they have been more varied in their choices of instrumentation on this release, using organs and other acoustic instruments where, in the past, just electronic keyboards would have been employed and this adds a more natural richness to the sound.
The album also spans two CDs and/or vinyls, being just two long to squeeze onto one, the band not wanting to compromise the release by dropping a track and when you listen you can hear why. I certainly wouldn’t want to chose which one to lose, it’s hard enough picking a favourite, but if put on the spot then ‘The Silent Man’ probably has the edge for its sheer emotive quality. The longer pieces do give you greater swathes of sound to lose yourself within but the shorter are a little more dense and impactful, especially the slightly industrialised ‘Lay Your Head To Rest’ and the wistful yet crushing ‘Inland Rain’. All are striking compositions that ebb and flow organically from one extreme to the other, in total making a sublime audio journey.
The Silent Man
Lay Your Head To Rest
A Dawn To Fear
Lights On The Hill
We Feel The End
‘A Dawn To Fear’ is, end to end, an unswervingly engaging listen and will be available from 20th September from Metal Blade in a mix of formats; digital, double CD, double 12″ vinyl and a variety of limited edition boxsets.