Promethean Misery – Tied up with Strings (Review)

Promethean Misery Tied up with StringsThis is the second album from Promethean Misery, an Australian solo doom act.

After producing a very accomplished debut album in 2017 called Ghosts, the talented one woman band Promethean Misery has now returned with a sprawling, epic album. Oh yes, this one’s quite the monster.

Whereas Ghosts was piano dominant, Tied up with Strings re-introduces us to the distorted violin sound that was such a pleasure to hear on Bloodlet.

So, we get 62 minutes of neoclassical doom metal, with an old-school heart and plenty of kick where it counts. Laced with despair and loss, this is rich, luscious music that tugs at the soul as it unfolds with melancholic grandeur and a keen sense of sadness and loss.

The singer’s gorgeous voice sounds better than ever on this album. Heavy with emotion, and delivering a performance that perfectly suits the lugubrious music, her voice flows from the music like the softest of silks being drawn lovingly over sharp blades.

A beguiling blend of metallic nous and classical expansiveness collide quite pleasurably on Tied up with Strings. The music’s doom metal is firmly rooted in the 90s, while being filtered through neoclassical style and grace. The end result is music that has a certain familiarity to it due to its influences, but is presented and delivered in such a way that speaks of more originality and creativity than what a lot of ostensibly similar bands are capable of.

The use of violin on this album is a success, making the most of the highly emotive instrument to craft affecting streaks of shaded colour seemingly out of the solid darkness that the forlorn heart of the music seems to reside in. Couple this with the almost omnipresent distorted elements, (which seem to have a softer edge than their guitar equivalents, despite still being exquisitely crushing when necessary), and you have an album that’s both pitch black and woven through with resplendent hues at the same time.

Listening to Tied up with Strings is akin to experiencing a section of the night come alive and whisper lethal sweetness straight into your mind. A perfect storm of misery and woe, but in a good way.

Essential listening for lovers of emotive darkness and affectingly immersive doom.

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