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The mark of the 'extreme' metal genre was imprinted on the Britons during their 'Damnation and a Day'-'Nymphetamine' era and it is a damn shame because at least one of these albums (this one) had some potential. The problem is that the conceptual music of Cradle of Filth used to be somewhat dangerous for those who were unfamiliar with band and then, just like that it became poppy. I don't know if it's all about the marketing aspect of the whole thing but the terror is gone. The sheer horror of 'Dusk and Her Embrace' and 'Cruelty and the Beast' is gone.
Dani has stated that one of the albums that influenced Cradle of Filth's music is Iron Maiden's 'Powerslave' and it is easy to see where he's coming from. The melodious sides of Cradle of Filth resemble what Maiden did back in the 80's albeit not in such a glorious manner and this might as well be one of the reasons that I started listening to Cradle of Filth in my early-mid teens. However, if you are to be influenced by Dickinson, Harris and co. just finish the fucking thing! I miss the double leads and the crescendos. All I get is the storytelling structure of each track and the galloping guitar sound. Each track has its own leitmotif and that's probably it. Okay I'm being a dick... There are good elements here and there and obviously some songs are really good. But is 'Babalon A.D. (So Glad for the Madness)' and 'Mannequin' enough? Well they are in some way. Be it a riff off of a random track in the middle of the record or those songs which are my eternal favorites, I find much enjoyment in this album's content. The reason I seem to be hating it is that it didn't live up to my expectations in contrast to their four first full-length albums.
This album is said to be the last of the greats and I completely agree. The instrumentation works, Dani is still in form and the atmosphere is overwhelming. People also say that they found their good shape again in their latest album. I don't know about that but I hope it's true. Anyway, Cradle of Filth released their sixth full-length in 2004 and that's where the real downfall began. That's where the barbaric blasts and rampant guitar riffs ceased to exist and a new pseudo-goth aesthetic was introduced. 'Damnation and a Day' is the end of an era and should be regarded as such. I respect it a lot even if I do not like it as much as the previous records. But between the thick lines of heavy riffage, robust rhythm sections, terrifying keyboard sounds and Dani's hissing voice one can still see Cradle of Filth as they were in their best days. A bunch of young men playing music because THEY and not their record company want to do so.
Favorite tracks: 'Carrion', 'Babalon A.D. (So Glad for the Madness)', 'Mannequin'.
For the first time since I started reviewing on the Metal-Archives, I find myself wanting to say exactly the same thing as UltraBoris at the beginning of my review. I really don't like listening to this album and I wanted to pile faeces on top of its kind-of-cool kind-of-random cover, but I'm starting to see some serious quality in the general music of 'Damnation and a Day' that I thought had drained out of Cradle of Filth about three quarters of the way through 'Midian'. What I'm actually doing at the moment, in case you find yourself in the same position, is listening to the whole album backwards, minus the interludes and introductions, and finding that after removing all the fucking storytelling dross there are some good ideas. That is, good ideas and no fucking clue what to do with them. CoF have always been decent musicians with only a few brain cells to share amongst the band.
There's a general rule of thumb about CoF albums that goes something like this: if you notice hot nude women on the cover art or lyrics booklet before the first track has started, the attractiveness of the music is going to be inversely proportional to that of the woman. If the band spent so much time picking great models for the artwork, they probably haven't spent much time actually writing the songs, and that's apparent for 'Damnation and a Day', since the model they found for Eve could make me listen to Taylor Swift while I smelled her farts through my dad's dressing gown and I would still consider it time well spent. However, sexy flatulence through old men's clothing is not far away from my description of songs like 'Thank God for the Suffering' or 'Hurt and Virtue', which contain little in the way of musical content, merely an atmospheric stench and a lot of fluff that make me wish I could either catch a glimpse of the farter or persuade my dad to put his dressing gown back on and stop displaying his inner thigh. The patchiness and length of this album is a really massive problem, because you may notice that I have just extended a metaphor beyond its natural length instead of actually talking about the music, and that's because the music has so many things to criticize it's making me tired just thinking about it. Let's do this as a list to save everybody's time:
1. No focus or structuring whatsoever;
2. Those fucking interludes are incredibly shit this time around;
3. Martin Powell has ejaculated his keyboards all across the whole album;
4. Dani Filth has brought back the annoying high-pitched screaming vocals;
5. Dani Filth has thought of more annoying vocals styles;
6. Dani Filth won't shut up;
7. There's a lot of narration and the concept is a bit arduous;
8. Most of the songs are too long;
9. The album is too long;
10. I can't tell many of the songs apart.
That's probably enough for now on the negative side, so let's do the positives:
1. There are some good riffs here;
2. The melodic guitars are decent.
What I really detest about these positives is that it makes the album sort of worth listening to, if only to catch those good points, meaning that one ends up like UltraBoris, who sums up the problem with a song like 'The Promise of Fever' with words like these (it's not a quote, just a paraphrase): "There's a nice 30 seconds here...and I don't like the next part...oh, another riff that's cool...and skip that song." Every song on 'Damnation and a Day' could be summed up like that. There's just no consistency, except for those couple of songs that are consistently shit from start to finish. We also go through the whole range of metal subgenres, including a bit of death, black, thrash, doom, trad, goth, and symphonic, so that the songs are not only structurally messy, but also confusing in their style too. The only songs I can recognize with ease are those with some kind of hook in the vocals like 'Better to Reign in Hell' or 'Babylon A.D.', though they don't necessarily lay claim to being the best efforts here.
There is undoubtedly some worthwhile music to be found here, especially in the riffs of songs like 'The Smoke of Her Burning' 'Serpent Tongue', and 'An Enemy Led the Tempest', but it would take a very dedicated listener to pick their way through the filler rubbish that clogs up even the better songs or to invest in the drama of the storytelling and concept enough to appreciate the many changes in style, at the expense of musical satisfaction. A 40 minute edit would probably be really good - this is really not good.
Damnation and a Day marked a big change for Cradle, as they were signed by Sony for the release of this very album. A common feature for this band's music is that every single album they put out is different, and that is something I really love about this band. It also marked the departure of bassist, Robin Eaglestone, and guitarist Gian Pyres. And how exactly did Cradle of Filth manage to put up with the line-up changes?
Quite well. Many feared a mainstream change to the music, that the band would sell out, now that there would be a Sony label on the CD. But that did not happen. Instead we got one of Cradle's most adventurous releases to date with great creativity and inspiration. For this album, a big orchestra and a choir was dragged into the studio, but this does not mean a drastic shift towards a orchestra orientated album. On the contrary, those elements brings the album to life. It gives it more substance, merely supporting the band, and it worked out perfectly. On the opening track, "A Promise Fever", it is displayed quite nicely how the guitar can be in focus, complimented by the choir, and the other way around plus some well conducted orchestra interlude passages. Of course, this is not how every track on the album are composed, but just an example of the new element to the music. The very core of this album is still Cradle of Filth. No doubt about it.
The guitars sounds great on this record, as they have a really powerful sound. This crunch and power is a good combination with the riffs themselves as they come out just as the sound: Crunchy and powerful. This is Dave Pybus' first appearance on a Cradle record, and his bass lays well in the mix giving the music a solid foundation and base. Adrian Erlandsson also performs great on this album and the drums sounds exquisite. Martin Powell have not been left out of the mix, as he is a big part of keeping the album true to the core of Cradle with his keyboard. He was a major figure in this band I must say that I miss him dearly. He was a main songwriter for this album, and wrote the score which the orchestra plays on Damnation and a Day. Dani Filth's vocals are just immaculate. Ever since Cruelty and the Beast he got a better grip of his vocals and more control. The blend between his deep growls and high screeches are simply marvelous. The production and mix fits this album well. It sounds big and that is a wise choice from the knob-turners. I do not think that it is overproduced, however it has the clear, yet strong and powerful sound it should have with all the elements that's been weaved into the songs.
The lyrical theme on this record is different from the previous ones. Just as the music has another inspiration, so does the lyrics. The vampire and goth lyrics are gone. Now we're treated with somewhat of a concept album based on John Milton's poem "Paradise Lost", seeing the fall of Man through the eyes of Lucifer. The album is divided into four parts which all are introduced with choir and orchestra, perfectly blended into the song that comes afterwards. And it also features some great narration from David McEwen. I would definitely recommend that you just listen to the entire from start until finish. With its 76 minutes it could definitely be prone to being too long, but it does not feel like it. This album holds a well crafted story with just as well crafted music. Just like any other album by Cradle I recommend that you sit down and immerse yourself into the music by reading the lyrics along to the music. Among my favourite excerpts from this album you will find: "A Promise of Fever", "An Enemy Led the Tempest", "Carrion", "Presents from the Poison-Hearted" and "Thank God for the Suffering". The two last songs in particular almost always manages to give me goosebumps. Even after more than ten years as a Cradle fan.
So who would I recommend this album to? Well, it is always hard to recommend Cradle of Filth albums as there is so many people out there who hates them. If you are into the early stuff this band put out, you should definitely check this album out. It is often overlooked, but in my opinion it stands tall and should not be dismissed. One of many great Cradle of Filth albums.
R.I.P. David McEwen.
Written for The Legacy Reviews
We've always known that CoF has been one of the most popular (but maybe not the most loved by die hard fans) black metal bands ever, and because of their new label we all knew it was going to be over produced, and while over-production may not suite some bands as Immortal and whatnot, CoF definately pulls it off.
CoF has always loved their gothic/vampyric lyrics, and Dani Filth is by far an above average writer when it comes to lyrics. But this album has some of their best lyrics, because in this album Dani couldn't make up his own stories he chose to expand on other people's story (namely Paradise Lost). The lyrics are apocalyptic, dark, epic, and above all...poetic, while still having his vampyric hints.
The track listing is almost perfect, with a mix between a romp through the Bible and Paradise Lost, the track listing is nearly perfect. The album starts, and ends, with the cryptic words "And Darkness Was Upon The Face Of The Deep".
The instruments are much more melodic, and focus more on power then sheer speed or technicality. Every song uses a live recorded orchestra and a live choir, and it really adds to the atmosphere that CoF has always been looking for. Dark, melodic, beautiful, and ugly all at the same time. The drums focus on sheer power, and it's needed with all the over dubbing the band does with it's instruments. The guitars are some of the most powerful instruments I've ever heard. They aren't heavy, they're just powerful. Paul Allender at his best, it's almost like he tried to be apart of the orchestra with his instrument.
This abum was Dani Filth at his best, between his low gutteral growl and his high shriek, he is a more extreme version of King Diamond. But sadly this was his last album with this much vocal talent, as his high shriek became less powerful, and his low growl had to try and take it's place.
If you're not all about speed and you like other types of softer music, as well as heavy metal, I suggest you give this one a listen at least once through.
Often the subject of debate, CoF's 2003 album had many fans, old-school or otherwise, crying foul while the ones who never liked the band in the first place held their opinions firm. Along with Dimmu Borgir's "Death Cult Armageddon," this was one of the most anticipated and critisized albums of 2003. The media placed unbelievable hype around it. So, does it live up to the hype, and furthermore, is it a good album?
Well, though the album is successful on many levels, it suffers from one thing: overambition. Everything is so blown out of proportion here that it's amost like arena rock in its scope. The production is absurdly clean, but considering that a large orchestra was used here, that was pretty much required. Guitars used a polished and ear-friendly tone while maintaining the low end needed for the band's palm-muted riffs, Adrian's drums are meticulously miked to make every stroke of every drum audible, and even the bass comes out front at a few points. This is a slightly refreshing change from the slightly muddled or ear-straining sound of albums like Midian, but also takes the balls right out of the music. Many of the best metal moments are washed out with dense choirs or full string sections, or are layered with endless sound effects. In the end, it comes off as a bit too digestible. The band spent too much time in the studio fucking around with what could be added to music, without realizing what was too much.
On the upside, this is one hell of a heavy metal album. A bit long-winded, yes; but the band offer up great performances on all fronts, and although Dani's lyrics take a near-biblical slant, lyrics from "Better to Reign in Hell" and "Babalon A.D." are some of the best he's written. Paul's guitar riffs have definitely taken a backset to the orchestra on this album, and aside from the occasional lead, most of the guitar work conists of powerful, driving tremolo picking or power chords; the band's long-time flirtations with keyboards come full swing here, and it's clear to see that tons of time was spent working out the orchestra parts in conjunction with the songs, and also the numerous interludes that divide the album into its respectable "chapters."
Here's the thing, though; while most metal bands that flirt with symphonic nature base the symphony around the metal, it seems to be the exact opposite in this scenario. It seems like the songs were written to revolve around the orchestra instead of vice versa. Only every now and then are the band allowed to come out in their full fury, such as the beginning of "An Enemy Led the Tempest." Otherwise, the band seem rather restrained here. Regardless of the restraint, "Hurt and Virtue" features incredible guitars and double bass work, and "End of Daze" proves to be one of the band's most ripping tracks they've composed.
Dani offers some slightly more ear-pleasing vocals here, and his performance is easily better than anything seen on "Midian." The lyrics prove to be one of the high points of the album. Rather than the usual dark romance/Goth/horror niche, Dani undertakes a huge role as narrator of the rise and fall of man in the garden of Eden. It's best described as Paradise Lost gone totally wrong, but it works well within the context of the music. "Mannequin" is the only clear exception to this, and seems to relate back to the famous "Her Ghost in the Fog."
The orchestra plays a major role in the album; so major, in fact, that this album would be a total flop without it. It does bring power out at most points, such as the opening track "The Promise of Fever" or the slightly tranquil "Serpent Tongue." But there are many instances where it all is simply too much; the metal isn't given enough room to breathe, and as a result, the album falls flat on its face at some points..
Despite the numerous problems, there still manage to be some stellar moments. "Hurt and Virtue," "An Enemy Led the Tempest," "Better to Reign in Hell," and "Mannequin," among a few other cuts, manage to be some of the best songs the band have composed. The band still pull through in their own special way, and prove that after all these years, Sony be damned, they can still bust out the goods.
I'll start with saying that Cradle of Filth went a little overboard with this album by putting in 17 tracks, 5 of which are interlude. You know if you have that many tracks it can't all be good, and it isn't.
I'll start off with the good aspects of this album. First one is the track "Hurt and Virtue". This one has some pretty decent riffs and some memorable melodies as well as some great riffs to start of Carrion. For a second you may even think that you are listening to real metal and not some silly ass band. "Presents of the Poison-Hearted" is another great track although we could have done without the "AHHH", "HHHAAAHH" etc. effects in the beginning. This one of the little problems with this album. It is a great example of overproduction. "Mannequin" is also a decent song with some memorable melodies although once again it reeks of overproduction. The rest of the tracks might have some decent riffs/melodies, but they just don't stand up. And the interludes just do nothing, they are boring. If they cut the interludes to one or two it would be fine but 5 is overdoing it.
Some more problems besides the overproduction and too many interludes is the damn drumming. It gets on your nerves in a matter of minutes. The constant same "tick...tick...tick" drumming style. It is bland and boring and has an annoying noise. You know, you could vary your drumming...
Another thing is that sometimes Dani's ear-piercing shrieks just go over the top. Makes me just want to cut my ears off. It is just horrid sometimes. And in the second track, "The Promise of Fever" they just go way over the top by giving us 20 seconds of just the same damn shrieking organs or whatever getting louder and louder. I felt like just crumbling my CD player to seconds...you should avoid piercing sounds like that like the plague. Its not that bad for the first 10 seconds but as it gets louder and louder it just kills you. God I've never heard a more horrid sound in my life before. I'd rather listen to someone scratching their nails on a blackboard than that. God.
It kind of hurts me to give such a low grade when there are actually some decent pieces on this album, but I can't knowing also how much crapola is in here. If you cut it down to 10 tracks and kept the good stuff you'd have a pretty decent album, but not with 17. This is definately one of Cradle's worst. Avoid it!
After healing for roughly two years after the Bitter Suites To Succibi incident, many fans cringed in horror to hear that a new "Cradle Of Filth" album was on it's way from a major record label, Sony Music. Many could not wait to get their hands on a new "Cradle" album since Live Bait For The Dead just simply wasn't enough. But what was to come from the band?
Well, there was talk of a possibly mainstream sounding black metal album. Could it be true? Could such an abomination exist? Damnation And A Day is, at the time of this review being concocted, the first and only black metal album to enter Billboard's Top 100 CD charts, and for good reason.
Damnation And A Day is seriously more diverse compared to their last album, Bitter Suites To Succubi. Essentially, that album was older, rare material redone, as well as covers thrown in the mix. However, Dani simply went overboard with the screeching. But, in this one, it comes in with perfect harmony.
Various tales are abound through the album as the chapters are seperated with haunting instrumentals that bring happiness one minute, and chaos the next. The album, thanks to Sony themselves, have spawned various singles, including 'Babylon A.D. (So Glad For The Madness)', 'Mannequin', and the one song many college stations played in their top 200 playlists, 'Thank God For The Suffering' (which, on a side note, reached #1 in the CMJ Top 200 Air Play charts).
The band did not sell out, however. In fact, this is considered to be on of their greatest albums yet. The banshee wails from Dani Filth are blended perfectly with deep growls and low screaches. Done with a much larger budget, they were able to use orchestras and other such elements to bring the album to life, which worked perfectly.
The guitars are fast one minute, and completely insane the next, blending an extreme dose of melody with the sound that at times can be so chaotic and hectic. The lyrics are deep and dark like usual, and such songs as 'Better To Reign In Hell' will have you reaching pinnacle tones in your voice on your long drive to work.
There aren't any flaws with the album that can be pointed out. It is simply a catchy, insane, and amazing display of black metal and gothic metal combined together to form a conceptual album revolving around small tales and songs of the dark and macabre. "Cradle Of Filth" fans, rejoice! For a major record label having one of the greatest metal acts of the nineties, this album is not mainstreamed and not aimed at people outside the style. This is simply a must have for anyone wishing to put the Bitter Suites To Succubi horror behind them...
This is the logical next step for Cradle of Filth. The amount of progressiveness and segues in their previous work was sure to lead to something like this, and indeed it does on Damnation And A Day. I will get all of my complaints out of the way first so that the praise will leave you with a positive note on a fairly positive album. The segues suck, bottom line. Unlike GOOD segues, like Megadeth's "Last Rites" or Burzum's "Channeling The Power of Souls Into a New God", these really don't go anywhere. It wouldn't be so bad if there was one, but we have to sit through FOUR.
Also, the vocal mix is sometimes irritating. I am one of the 3 people on earth who can stand Dani's voice, but when they mix the high with the gay low growl he does, it ends up sounding pretty retarded. That about does it for the complaints. This album is nice because it manages to stay fresh, even throughout the course of a 6 or 7 minute song, due to the abdunance of changes and different riffs. The first song, "A Promise of Fever" is an exellent example, there are at least 3-4 good riffs in this song, and the pace never slows. The next song "Hurt And Virtue" is COMPLETELY different, with a rather Finntroll-ish feel to it. Skip ahead a bit..."Better to Reign in Hell" is pretty catchy with some nice drumming. Did I mention that the bass is more prominent in this album? It adds a nice touch and makes the music sound more full. Towards the end of the album, "Babylon A.D." begins with an incredibly evil riff and "The Smoke of Her Burning" closes the album in a big way, showcasing the typical CoF buildup to songs. Good album, obviously not black metal for the 2 people on earth that don't know that, but I would say it's probably less Faggothic than some of their previous stuff due to the abundance of real riffs.
Overall a good but not really that memorable listen.
I really thought I was going to totally fucking hate this one. Really, I was coming up with all sorts of brilliant new conjugations of the word "excrete", but alas they will have to wait, as this album is really not as bad as it could have been. Dimmu Borgir, this is not. I mean, yes it's silly as all fuck, and there are some really insipid moments of stupid shrieking, geigh keyboards, bad drumming, etc etc... but the album is also filled with really cool riffs! Who the fuck saw that one coming?
For example in the opener, around 0.58, damn that is some quality stuff. It's the crap that abounds at around 1.16 that makes the album so abominable. Loud keyboards, banal shriek, tickticktick drumming. If they could excise those crap sections of crap and throw in the solid sections - like the one at 1.44 for example - it would not be nearly as bad.
Oh yeah - whispering section is BAD. But when the guitars kick in at around 3.15, it gets more decent. I could do without the wailing "ooh!" once ever 3 seconds, and the random string section at 4.38 too... the album really does suffer from "guys, too many random ideas" syndrome. That seems to be the trend in modern metal nowadays... lots of sucky ideas alternated with a few good ones. But when the good ones come in...
Oh there are more songs on this happy dude, aren't there? Hurt and Virtue mixes in really loud, really faggothic keyboards, with some decent riffs. Somewhere buried in here is a Helloween album. Seriously. And how can you not love the fuck out of that riff at 0.38? The songwriting is exciting as fuck, you cannot deny them that. Decent speed metal riffage occurs again at 2.58 again with some great guitar melodies too.
An Enemy led the Tempest... sounds at the beginning like the CD is skipping (well, it's an mp3, same difference - but hey that riff is pretty heavy). Then we get the keyboards and Dani, the man of a thousand homoerotic voices, but that riff at 0.47!
Damned in Any Language! Yay, a song that I can despise! It's just a silly orchestral interlude, and Virgin Steele this is not. Enough wailing, if you want the choir of the damned, go listen to Pleasure to Kill!
Serpent Tongue ... I'm not too keen on the tickticktick fairycore section at 3.17, but the outro riff section just works. There's just so much going on in these songs... lots of keyboard layers, Dani going all wild, and hey, the guitars. This is some really exciting, interesting music here. It doesn't always work, but at least it keeps my attention.
Carrion - ooh, a Kreator cover! Here come the monster riffs right from the beginning! Well no, it's not a Kreator cover, but the riffs certainly are there at the beginning. The song fades as it goes on, before coming back to life around 4.08.
Present from the Poison-hearted is excellent, going wild with speed metal riffs from the get-go. 0.33 in, prepare to bang. If anyone claims that this band is not metal... I'm sorry, but fuck you. They're certainly not black metal, but they are definitely a metal band. There's some sections where the guitars drop out and we veer dangerously into Dark Tranquillity territory, but when it comes back, oh man it comes back and rips your fucking face off.
Doberman has a weird little intro before it goes into the frenetic, hyperfast section. Oddly enough, this isn't nearly as incoherent as many previous Cradle of Filth albums - this has solid power metal written all over it. Not a great song, but not bad. In fact, about here is where the album starts to drag a little. It is 17 songs, after all... Babylon AD has some decent riffs in it too, and then that little Pantera section around 2.52 in.
A Scarlet Witch performed the Interlude. Yep - there's a few of those in here too... there's only 12 real songs and 5 of these little symponic passages. They don't really do much for me.
Mannequin - this one definitely suffers from having too many ideas thrown in - the vocal effect at 3.42 is horrible, and some of the riffs aren't emphasised enough and the middle section is completely forgettable. Thank God for the Suffering is more of the same - the album just doesn't work well for so many songs, and that is its greatest problem.
But we do close on a strong note with The Smoke of her Burning. At 1.23 this just goes into a fucking thrash nightmare. This section is the highlight of the album right here. The song then gradually diminishes in intensity, leading into the outro piece. Kinda average from then on, but man that thrash riff is pwnage!
Dang it... and I had really been hoping to compare something on here to a coprophagic weasel, and I had this brilliant word made up that combined the best features of "monkey" and "testicle" into a new three-syllable construction that would've made Shakespeare proud. Alas, not this time.
Hey I heard Opeth haven't broken up yet. Gotta save up the good ideas for when their new one comes out! Because THIS album is not complete goblin swill, this actually has its moments.
(Attention: i'm making this review based upon what I’ve heard on the promo cd to which I had access in the last days before this review, but the content is exactly the same that’s present on the original release...)
So Dani and his hellish vampiric servants have once again risen from their graves to give us some more "100% make up" metal. A long time went from the release of Midian, their last originals record before this one, and the band went through a lot of changes that would eventually affect their sound in a (well, I can't say negative) different way. Robin, their long time bassist exited, being immediately replaced by ex- Anathema nocturnal pulse Dave, and the band was not a 6, but a 5 piece showcase that recorded their album with only a guitarist, the (almost gaining the "Dracula" rank in the band...) Paul Allender, that recorded all the parts, the most of them eventually composed by him.
And this is exact reason why I decided to call this record "We wanted to make another Midian, but even taking the crap out of ourselves, we didn't managed to do it.", instead of "Damnation and a Day". Gian Pyres was without doubt a very skilled riff maker, and it's very sad that we get to realise this after his departure of the band. Paul Allender's guitar rhythms are almost the same thing in all of the record, some thrashy speed, coupled with some death metal riffs over here and there, something really boring sometimes, very far from the massive rifforama of songs like "Chtulu Dawn". It's a similar guitar work to that present in "Midian" but with lower intensity and much less catchy...
Dave plays his role in a competent way, not proving yet why is he a worthy replacement over Robin, but he'll have lots of time to show what he can do (ah ah, just kidding...probably Dani already fired him).
Adrian is not often allowed to show his true potential as a drummer since the songs have some rhythm basis and changes that don't allow him to make some furious blast beats or really thunder-drumming, but I still think he made an hell of a job, and he's a very skilled drummer (what is he doing in C.O.F???).
Martin Foul’s keyboard playing gained a lot of respect from me on this one, not by the role he played on the metal songs, but for those little instrumental pieces. Really vampiric melody stuff capable of putting your hairs all up and make you imagine that you have Dracula himself just at your back. I knew he was good on My Dying Bride, but somehow he managed to transcend himself.
Well, all that it's left are the "glammy vampiric horrid screams" by Dani. Bah...same deal like the one he's been making since the "Cruelty and the Beast" album. Those really high pitch screams with that sinister dracula voice, and those furious beast growls. The saaame thing.
Well about the songs...There are 2 great songs, good songs, some average, and some not even worth mention. Hey, this one has it all!!! 17 songs. After hearing it I got the thought that they could mix pairs of 2 or 4 songs into one and make this a high quality 8 or 10 track record, but, you know that even vampires get their teeth really bend over when getting old, and my god these guys cant drain a drop of blood to save their lives now.
Very worth listening to "Presents to the Poison-Hearted" and the death metal amazing rifforama of "The Promise of Fever". "The Smoke of Her Burning", "Babalon A.D", "Better to Reign in Hell" and "Carrion" are also good but at the same time they get the rank of "not very interesting" along with the others.
Still, it's a good Cradle of Filth album to get. Their weakest until now, but still very "headbangable"...