This is the third album from Towards Darkness, a post-metal metal band from Canada.
Towards Darkness have a heart of doom, which is then combined with sludge and post-metal to produce 44 minutes of engaging and immersive music.
Now, tagging something as doom usually has certain connotations, the most obvious one being the frequent use of obscene song lengths. However, Towards Darkness largely eschew this trend, opting for shorter tracks, (relatively speaking – 3 songs are over 8 minutes in duration), to spread their gloom-filled message. The reason for this, I’d wager, is their aforementioned sludge and post-metal sides, which allow the band access to a wider range of stylistic choices. Overall I’d describe Towards Darkness as a sludgy post-metal band with a particularly doomy approach to their songs, but others may disagree, of course.
Regardless, these tracks are emotive and atmospheric, and riven with nuanced delivery and introspective shading. The heavy/light and build/release approaches that post-metal does so well are present and correct, allowing the band to craft songs that demonstrate a multifaceted delivery across the album’s playing time. Keyboards provide subtle layers to the songs, working well with the rest of the music to enhance and heighten the feelings of the listener. Other instruments also appear occasionally, incorporated naturally into the framework of whatever song they appear in.
Sitting atop the music – which ranges from grim heaviness to ethereal lightness – are ugly sludge vocals, unrepentant in their harshness. They are well-performed, and do their job nicely.
Fans of Cult of Luna, Monolithe, Neurosis, Dirge, and Ufomammut should make sure they check this out.