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Dominus...for those of you who don't know, this band would later evolve into Volbeat, but before doing that they started out as a death metal band from Ringsted. Speaking from experience, I lived in Ringsted for 13 years and I am surprised that a band like Dominus or even any kind of metal band would spawn in that city. It is the asshole of Zealand since nothing fucking happens and the metalhead population is 0 since I moved the hell away, but back to the matter at hand! Dominus changed their style for each album and personally I would only recommend the first two albums.
View to the Dim is death metal with a capital D. The successor The First 9 is also death metal, but it has more hints of what Dominus would become later on, yet it still contained death metal vocals. And yes, it is Michael Poulsen who is the vocalist, and I am, like many others, truly amazed that he can deliver the vocals that you'll hear on this album.
"Upon the years of the seventh century, we followed the blaze to Valhalla. To see the mighty kingdom of Odin... To be among the bravest men of history."
The cover for this album looks really good, but I never understood why their logo was kept in the background of the white font instead of just using their proper logo. Anyway, Dominus are from Denmark (like yours truly) and we are many that take pride in our heritage as Vikings. For once you can see it on the cover and you can hear it in the lyrics. Vikings and Nordic mythology is an ongoing theme on this album, with well-written lyrics that are well performed and Mjölnir (Thor's hammer) is also portrayed on the back of the album. Aside from all that, the album's strongest force is its production because it still blows me away even though I've listened to Dominus since 2010. The word "perfect" is not something I would ever use in a review, but the production on this album is pretty close! Drums, bass, guitar, vocals - everything. It all sounds amazing, everything is audible, and nothing's being drowned out. The vocals and the bass are probably what keeps blowing me out of my chair. It just sounds amazing and is something that must be heard.
The highlights of the album are "Tears of Black", "Bring Down the Roars", "Spiritual Mountain", and "The Ravens Eye", but I would strongly recommend you just listen through the whole thing. As those songs are the ones that shine the most, this whole album is put together extremely well and it is a pure joy going from start to finish. There is only one track that I could live without and that is the outro "Weiv Ot Eht Mid" which is stripped of all instruments and only features vocals. I can't hear what's being said on the track, but I definitely think it is redundant.
This album always struck me as something special because of its unique sound. Some songs have grown more on me over time than others and for some everything is just instant hit. We are all different in that way, but I can assure you that if you like quality old school death metal with a production that will melt your mind, then you should try check out Volbeat before they went soft. View to the Dim is a lost and forgotten gem and it is one of my favourite death metal records...and a little side tip: if you, like me, enjoy View to the Dim, I would recommend that you check out the band's two demos, Ambrosias Locus and Astaroth, which were released respectively in '92 and '93. The band's single, Sidereal Path of Colours, from '93, also adds some good material for your Dominus death metal collection!
"Now as we ride in iron and steel, we know that this is the land of eternity."
Written for The Legacy Reviews