Dawn Ray’d – To Know the Light (Review)

Dawn Ray'd - To Know the LightDawn Ray’d are a black metal band from the UK and this is their third album.

Dawn Ray’d have produced an enviable discography in a relatively short space of time, (including 2019’s Behold Sedition Plainsong), and it’s great to now have their third album To Know the Light upon us.

One of the things I’ve always liked about Dawn Ray’d is their ability to combine intensity, emotion, and catchiness into brief slices of efficient, song-focused black metal. On the 42 minutes of To Know the Light this is exactly what we get; songs that are dark with intensity, bright with emotive colour, and infectious as Hell.

These ten tracks pack a lot in. They’re layered and textured, folk-enriched with delicious violin and acoustic nuance, and armed to the teeth with anger, claws, and flames. The melodies are infused with emotive feeling and the well-written songs work with these to produce hooks that dig deep. Raw and aggressive, yet also atmospheric and deep, To Know the Light offers a very strong musical package. Even the interlude-style tracks are well-crafted and worthwhile. There’s also a full-on folk masterpiece in Freedom in Retrograde, which is simply excellent.

I particularly like Dawn Ray’d’s singer. Not only is his voice expressive and sharp, but the rhythms and patterns he uses for his voice are satisfying and impactful. All of the vocals on this record are imbued with a rich passion, whether they’re icy screams or the occasional bout of clean singing. There’s also death growls here and there, which I really like in my black metal.

To Know the Light is a highly enjoyable album, one that marries forceful impact with a passionate embrace.

Very highly recommended.


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