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Certainly Sounds Rainy - 52%

Sweetie, July 17th, 2018

Dessiderium isn't so much a band I stumbled upon, but one that stumbled upon me by recommendation since I greatly enjoyed Atlas. With the melodic death metal connection between the two, I can see why fans would lump them together. There is, however, a lot that Rain Gates has to differentiate itself from the heard. One thing's for sure, it's a lot harder to adjust to, as it's far less accessible in the means that there are many stylistic and atmospheric blends thrown into this sour smoothie of an album. Musically, it's pretty fantastic, but at the same time, it's one of those records that's very taste oriented, and unfortunately, my taste buds and the flavor don't see eye to eye. As much as I'd say that it takes multiple spins to take it all in, that in itself will need a lot of time and attention, because of how long it is (clocks in over an hour and twenty minutes), and how much is crammed into the songs.

Getting all of the ingredients out of the way, the base product is definitely melo-death, but there are hints of black metal, and gaze-esque elements, ultimately molding into some progressive metal riffs. The black metal aspects mostly come in with the vocals, because they take on drawn out, higher shrieks that paint an image of dark forests and cold environments. Perhaps this goes hand in hand with the "gaze" like droplets, because the two work together to form the super thick and rainy atmosphere that is established. Not all of it is muddy and cold, though. Every once in a while, clean singing will be thrown into the mix, as well as piano sections, however a lot of the time those get drowned out. Cleaner riffs and guitar distortions as well as other string instruments make their way into the works, also helping this vary in mood (although the general emotion that I get is sadness). All of this above and beyond instrumentation is paired with odd time signatures and slightly awkward riff complexions, making it very fitting for fans of progressive metal. The tones switch rapidly, with the mentioned slower and cleaner moments being tossed into the chaotic speed picking and blast beats. That, in fact, also adds to the "blackened" feel that I get from this record.

It's understandable that with all of that influence, you're gonna need a lot of space to squeeze it all in. But that's where some of the issue I have with it lies; it could have been more compact. Songs drag on a lot, making me anxious for the next track usually around halfway through it. The long guitar breaks and pouring down blast beats go on for minutes at a time, making it less appealing. The exotic instrumentation and constant need to keep the listener on their feet are what save this from falling through, but like I said, this is also a taste thing. There are many moments that I greatly appreciate, but this is more for the fan who seeks epic, awkward tracks that later resolve themselves. Because of that, a lot of attention is required to get the anticipated mindset, so I don't recommend spinning this while you're at work (the first mistake I made upon first listen).

When push comes to shove, Dessiderium are very talented and clearly have achieved the sound that they were shooting for. The playing is solid, the air is hazy and heavy, and the ideas are very fascinating. There's a giant audience of prog, black metal, and melo-death fans that should dig this up first chance they get. However, if you prefer straight and to the point melo-death that requires a smaller package, then this probably isn't for you. Worth hearing to say the least, and there's clearly a high understanding of song construction. As the saying goes, once you know the laws of music, you can break the laws of music.