Spirit Descent – Seven Chapters in Minor

By Gruesome Greg

I must say that I know next to nothing about this German band, for whom this is their second album. Mind you, this sounds like a pretty decent slice of epic doom a la Candlemass, with tunes like “Dawn of Mankind” and “Owner of Fifty Names” displaying the latter’s slow, brooding deposition—the opening of “Love Turned to Stone” even reminds me of “Solitude.” Though Spirit Descent’s singer’s got a bit of an odd accent, he does have the pipes to pull off the more-operatic style this subgenre requires, which is definitely a plus.

“The Tragedy of Captain Scott” is a lengthy tale stretching nearly fourteen minutes. A poor man’s “Rime of the Ancient Mariner,” considering the subject matter, but I’d liken it more to “Pieces of Your Smile,” the lengthiest tune from Argus’ latest, albeit with a tad too much spoken word. On that note, these guys sound sorta like a poor man’s Argus to me. The personnel is in place (three guitars, operatic vocals), but they seem more dirge-like, less dynamic. That’s not entirely a bad thing, mind you…

In fact, if this band’s MO is to copy Candlemass and Argus as closely as they can, they’ve hit the mark. I gotta dock ‘em a couple points for originality, but full marks for execution are well-deserved.


Sean is the founder/publisher of Hellbound.ca; he has also written about metal for Exclaim!, Metal Maniacs, Roadburn, Unrestrained! and Vice.