Cloak - The Burning Dawn review

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Band: Cloak
Album: The Burning Dawn
Release date: October 2019

01. March Of The Adversary
02. The Cleansing Fire
03. A Voice In The Night
04. Tempter's Call
05. Into The Storm
06. Lifeless Silence
07. The Fire, The Faith, The Void
08. On Poisoned Ground
09. Where The Horrors Thrive

Cloak themselves have named Dissection, Deep Purple, and Fields Of The Nephilim as their main influences and it's true that you can hear all of them on the band's sophomore album, The Burning Dawn. However, the Atlanta-based quartet sounds like a North American version of Tribulation more than anything else. Have I piqued your interest yet?

Just like its predecessor, which drew many of its cues from Tribulation's Children Of The Night, Cloak's latest offering expands on this sound with a bit of a more gothic approach, akin to what the Swedes did with Down Below. They don't go full-on goth though; their music is still harsh, yet full of catchy hooks, in an almost perfect marriage of melodic black metal and black 'n' roll that also reminds me of Satyricon and Necrophobic at their grooviest moments. Normally, I would diss a band and/or an album that feels so much like a clone but its infectious songwriting has made me listen to The Burning Dawn more times than I can count.

The guitars drive this album forward with Nordic-sounding tremolo riffs, groovy chugs and killer leads, as well as acoustic sombre passages, backed by aggressive and energetic drumming, and a glorious bass, which is more audible in the calmer parts of the album. The raspy voice of Scott Taysom is one-dimensional but fits the music well and it is fairly easy to understand what he is singing about. I can't find a skippable song, but the black 'n' roll swagger of "A Voice In The Night", the irresistible piano of "Lifeless Silence", and the mouth-watering instrumental inventiveness of "The Fire, The Faith, The Void" seem to stand out for me. The production is excellent, with the more feral sections having the necessary dirtiness and rawness, and the softer moments enjoying the clarity they deserve. Another plus is Adam Burke's painting of a forgotten wasteland lying under a gloomy sunset; his cover art is stunning as always.

So, with riffs that make you want to get up and dance to (yes, this can happen), bass-filled gothic bridges to die for, choruses that stick in the memory, and leads and solos that will test your stamina in air guitar playing, this album is one of the most addictive you'll come across this year. Granted, it gets a low score on the authenticity scale but this doesn't take away the fact that it is a very well written and executed record that puts the words 'dark' and 'fun' in the same sentence.

"I hear the howling of the southern winds
The whispers of the tempter's call
For therein lies the beauty of thy infernal quest
Behold the unity of blood, fire, and death"


Written on 12.12.2019 by Only way to feel the noise is when it's good and loud!


Comments: 6   Visited by: 100 users
12.12.2019 - 01:45
The only reason I feel bitter about this is them touring with Bartushka
Father: How can a picture of a field be sad without a sad person looking sad in the field?
Young Woman: That's an interesting problem. Yeah, I struggle with that.
12.12.2019 - 10:01
I was searching for something similar to Tribulation and finally got it. Glad that I found them.
12.12.2019 - 13:07
Bad English
Tage Westerlund
Life is to short for LOVE, there is many great things to do online !!!

Stormtroopers of Death - ''Speak English or Die''

I better die, because I never will learn speek english, so I choose dieing
18.12.2019 - 01:20
Dream Taster
The Enemy Within
Really good stuff. Black'n'roll a la Tribulation with some Dissection elements.
18.12.2019 - 12:08
Erotic Stains
As a huge fan of Tribulation this makes me laugh and headbang at the same time. Sometimes it's almost embarrassing how much they sound like Tribulation.
01.09.2020 - 06:25
God, I can't get enough of these guys, every song is a potential song for my playlist. And that tribulation comparison, no kidding mate.

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