Rating:
7.7
Before The Rain - Frail
1 June 2011


01. And The World Ends There
02. Shards
03. Breaking The Waves
04. A Glimpse Towards The Sun
05. Frail
06. Peace Is Absent


I'm ashamed to admit that for not so long ago, Portugal wasn't really a country I noticed when it came to metal, let alone doom metal. So it's a surprise to see that the nice weather is not preventing the musicians from creating tragic landscapes. Released in June, the sophomore album by Before The Rain might be a good start for people who haven't embraced this wonderfully doomed kind of music yet.

Since I haven't listened to their debut, comparisons can't be made, allowing me to appreciate it for what it is. What strikes me as fascinating about this album is how long it is but somehow the album is over without me noticing so the replay button is a welcome choice for me. We are, after all, talking about 75 minutes of music. The music is just well constructed and accessible but in this case, accessibility is not a bad thing. The band's brand of doom metal is calm, melodic and heavily inspired by the post-metal scene. Some people might argue that this album is maybe too calm for its own good but I feel like they nailed their style, portraying a feeling of peace. Just floating about a tranquil ocean, waiting for that final and gentle wave that will leave you by the shore… Frail and forlorn just like the boat on that peaceful artwork.

While their compositions won't break any grounds the band deserve credit for such a good performance. Bittersweet and slow leads flow through the riffs and powerful drums in classic doom fashion. The bass is ever present, easily audible and being the backbone of some great and even catchy moments such as the ending of "And The World Ends There." The biggest surprise for me was the vocal work. Some powerful growls appear from time to time but the vocals are mainly clean on this album, very emotional and inspired which goes well along with the more calm and melancholic moments of the album.

It can be said this album is a bit closer to post-metal than doom which might turn off some of their fans who are possibly expecting something slightly more aggressive. However, Frail is a good album regardless of the genre and it surely has the ability to help some people out there to get into the more gloomy and slow side of metal.

Performance: 9
Songwriting: 8
Originality: 7
Production: 8


Band profile: Before The Rain
Album: Frail


 


written by Mr. Doctor | 21.09.2011



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BloodTears - 21.09.2011 at 11:29  
Agree overall. The rating is about right, as far as I'm concerned. I gave it an 8 myself.

One of the good surprises of the year for me coming from my home country. Ultimately, it's a good sounding record with good songs in it.
Mr. Doctor - 21.09.2011 at 11:31  
Written by BloodTears on 21.09.2011 at 11:29

Agree overall. The rating is about right, as far as I'm concerned. I gave it an 8 myself.

One of the good surprises of the year for me coming from my home country. Ultimately, it's a good sounding record with good songs in it.


Yeah, I couldn't find any meh-songs. There were many highlights. My favorite moment has to be the last 2 or so minutes of the first track. I really liked that fast and melodic moment combined with the vocals. A solid release indeed.
Quite a growner too!
InnerSelf - 22.09.2011 at 01:49  
I was a disappointed with it since I had high expectations after their debut "which I love" I think the debut had more personality in it. this is still a good release and I agree with your review and with the rating but I guess it will grow more on me since I finally found some time to dedicate for it.
Merchant of Doom - 22.09.2011 at 15:58  
This is definitely softer and more approachable than the previous effort, which was awesome, imo... the occasional harsh vocals give the album enough punch, though. Pleasant post-doom stuff...
ravendeath - 22.09.2011 at 22:47  
Maybe some songs are too long, but nevertheless this is one hell of a doom release. This release should compete for the best doom metal release of the year.
Cassian - 23.09.2011 at 05:36  
This album reminds me of Anathema a lot. A darkened Anathema, though. Still it is a brilliant album and I am so glad I downloaded it.
Daniell - 23.09.2011 at 20:32  
I was waiting for this one, but it's a huge letdown, a 6 tops. Too bad.

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