Diving Into Darkness


Nuclear Blast Records, 2000


REVIEW BY: Christopher Thelen


Quick: Imagine what it would sound like if someone like James Hetfield fronted Days Of The New.

Germany's Darkseed kind of remind me of such a strange musical marriage. Their latest disc, Diving Into Darkness, has all of the classic metal framework, but the band seems to to be more concerned about structuring a solid vocal and a solid song than they are about playing with all guns blazing. It's an interesting concept, and a refreshing one.

Can you tell that I like these guys? More than that; I my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250 love this album.

Side note: I'm not listing the members of the band for the simple reason that I'm getting conflicting information about lineups from the official band site and the page for them on Nuclear Blast's site. I'm also working off an advance copy, so if you want the details on the band, read the liner notes.

Darkseed might be a German band, but their music transcends any country styles that you might expect. All in all, the music has a general feel and crunch to it, something that is rare when dealing with overseas metal. Darkseed's vibe refuses to be pigeonholed by their nationality; instead, the band charges forth on tracks like "Forever Darkness," "Counting Moments" and "Rain" and proceeds to win the listener over with two important keys.

The first is songwriting. Whatever your opinion on heavy metal, even the strongest opponent of the genre would have to agree that the songwriting on Diving Into Darkness is top notch. Simply put, there is not a dead track on this disc, proving that a lot of time and effort went into crafting the best possible album this band could do.

The second is vocals. There is no ear-piercing screaming on this disc; instead, you have solid vocal performances that appeal to the heart as well as the eardrum. For that alone, listeners should be eternally grateful that someone in this genre cares about laying down a solid vocal presence.

Track-wise, I dare you to find one lemon among these songs. You can't. Tracks like "Cold Under Water," "Left Alone" and "Autumn" all suggest that when metal makes its comeback (as I've been saying it will for the last year or so), Darkseed is going to be one of the bands at the top of the heap.

Diving Into Darkness is an absolutely wonderful album that shows off the best of this genre. Unless you've followed the band since their debut in the early '90s, you might not have heard of them until now. Chances are, once you've experienced this disc, you won't be able to stop talking about them.

Rating: A

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



© 2000 Christopher Thelen and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Nuclear Blast Records, and is used for informational purposes only.