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Embracing Dusk Itself.... - 93%

ann_666, May 1st, 2012

When I first heard Cradle of Filth, I was amazed and mesmerized by their eerie, dark, and goth- themed music. For an instance, this album, Dusk...and Her Embrace, is a best example and maybe the best album that Cradle released (in my own opinion). Please bear with me, for I can't review the all the songs on this album, so I'll just review some tracks and the overall music presented.

The album starts with an instrumental song "Humana Inspired to Nightmare", an opening track that was led and driven by keyboard which gives it a dark, creepy, and eerie atmosphere that haunts the listener. For me, it seems like a soundtrack of a haunted castle. Then comes "Heaven Torn Asunder" with slow guitar riffs accompanied by Dani's traditional high-pitched scream. Bass lines are audible and well presented on this track, but the keyboard work is not too overwhelming, presented in terms of timing and precision by means of where to stop and where to start, thus creating an atmosphere that doesn't ruin the song.

"Funeral in Carpathia" is an adrenalin rush. In some versions it has a side note: "Be Quick or Be Dead", and I do believe that note speaks for itself, from the intro of fast guitar riffs that are in harmony with the keyboard. Both elements, the guitar riffs and keys, complement each other. No matter how fast the riffs are, the keys are able to stand along side by side with the riffs. The drums are indeed set to a higher level with fast blastbeats that are well transitioned. Nick Barker showcases not only speed and brutality, but also technicality in terms of drumming on this track. Vocals are well-executed from high-pitched screams, low growls, and even whispered, narration-like singing with, of course, the help of backing vocals courtesy of Sarah and Danielle.

"Dusk and Her Embrace" blows all the songs from the entire album. It's not as fast as the other songs when it comes to drumming style and riffs, but what makes this song the most amazing, is that it was solely composed and created with intense atmosphere. For me, I prefer songs with intense atmosphere, feelings, and even emotions, which matters most. It's not about how heavy, brutal, or even how fast the song is. It's all about giving a song a soul, a life that creeps the listeners from within, and for that Cradle really did justice for this genius and brilliantly- constructed song. It's eerie, dark, and haunting, which is of course courtesy of the keyboards (gives me goosebumps every time I listen to this song). Lyrically, it's poetic and well-transitioned from the slow to fast parts of the song. The vocals are killer and I think Dani's vocals on this track are his best from all of the songs Cradle ever made.

"Beauty Slept in Sodom" starts with eerie keyboards accompanied by Dani's low, guttural narrated voice. Indeed a slow song to start, but it's just a beginning of an outburst that will leave you begging for more. Overall, I highly recommend this album for the reason of musicality when it comes to the guitars and drumming technique. The atmosphere created on this album is intense, eerie, haunting, tragic, and dark, courtesy of the keyboards where Cradle of Filth is a master of creating such atmosphere, thus giving us musically and lyrically outstanding album.

Best songs:
Heaven Torn Asunder
Funeral in Carpathia
Dusk and Her Embrace
Beauty Slept in Sodom