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Godsend : As The Shadows Fall

Godsend is the brainchild of Gunder Audun Dragsten, but I think the band mostly gained their fame by having Dan Swanö sing as a session musician together with Benny Larsson (Edge of Sanity) as a session drummer. Simply mentioning that Dan Swanö is involved is definitely one of the best ways to get my attention. Gunder is responsible for writing all the music however, and approximately half the lyrics. The other lyrics are written by various other people (Dan Swanö, Martin Kvam and Robert Barkhald).

The album opens with the rocking 'Slaydream', to be followed by the almost funeral-doomish 'As The Shadows Fall'. This sets a precedent throughout basically the entire album; one doom rock 'n roll song followed by one torturously slow song, then repeating the cycle. Although one or two songs also vary individually between more up tempo and slower parts the only really odd one out is the track 'Walking The Roads Of The Unbeheld'. This surprisingly light song seems a bit out of place, as it happily frolics along until the last heavy doom-laden track 'Silence Of Time' starts.

Overall two main styles dominate the album. A more up tempo type of doom rock 'n roll and almost funeral type doom. The first style does not impress me that much. This however could be due to the fact I myself am not a huge fan of up tempo doom rock. So perhaps it's some of the most brilliant work ever written and I just don't recognise it. It rocks and it rolls while at the same time the lyrics express doomy topics. It's very enjoyable and scores a good moderate score on the heaviness scale, but it simply is not my thing.

The slower, solemn funeral doom tracks interest me more. At points they even remind me of Mournful Congregation (although Godsend of course did it before Mournful Congregation did). The sad, depressing atmosphere weighs down heavily on you. The songs seem to have you gasping for air on various occasions. The misery can be felt throughout your entire body. Slow and mournful, the basic ingredients that make any modern-day doomster’s heart beat faster, or perhaps in this case slower would be a better description. We are dealing with doom-metal after all.

Overall I think Godsend's 'As The Shadows Fall' is a good album, and while Dan Swanö's presence originally drew me to the band, it's not his presence that dominates. While a good album, it doesn't 100% convince me either. All the elements are there, and the sadness of Gunter feels real. But something still seems to be missing. Some magic spark to really send this album skyrocketing into doomy fame. The ingredients are there, but at times I do feel like the cook doesn't really know how to combine them all. That doesn't take away from the fact this is a very enjoyable album with many good to even excellent moments on it, but there clearly is much room for improvement at the same time.

Reviewer's rating: Unrated


Tracklist :
1. Slaydream
2. As The Shadows Fall
3. With The Wind Comes The Rain
4. Autumn Leaves
5. Spiritual Loneliness
6. Beyond The Mist Of Memories
7. My Lost Love
8. Walking The Roads Of The Unbeheld
9. Silence Of Time

Duration : Approx. 42 minutes

Visit the Godsend bandpage.

Reviewed on ??-??-???? by Aldo Quispel
Forever Autumn
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