Doomsday Ceremony Album Review  – ‘Black Heart’

It’s been a long time coming for Brazilian (extreme) metal act Doomsday Ceremony. After forming in 2000 they released their debut album ‘Apocaliptic Celebration’ in 2005. It now took more than a decade to release the sophomore album ‘Black Heart’. The band had been writing the songs for the album for quite a while and finished the tracks in 2012. It has taken another four years for Greyhaze Records to finally release the album. In the meantime the Brazilians published a number of videos on YouTube which form part of the album.

Doomsday Ceremony play an intriguing mix of various metal subgenres. There are of course the strong ties to classic metal with melodic guitar lines and big choruses. On the other hand there are the extreme metal influences most notably their black metal elements. But the band doesn’t stop there. The occasional thrashy riff as well as the straight forward death metal references are added to the eclectic mixture of Doomsday Ceremony’s sound. The overarching element remains the classic 80s metal influence that is evident in each and every song. It ranges from twin-axe melodies to classic riffs and even some balladesque passages.

‘Black Heart’ is a solid album with well written songs. The tracks meander between the different subgenres and are never firmly in one camp. All tracks rather have various elements from the different subgenres. That adds to the freshness because there is almost always a twist to every song. ‘Fury’ for example starts out as a ballad before it increases its intensity to an all-out classic metal track before adding some rougher parts that even venture slightly into death metal. The opener ‘Vultures Of War’ starts out as an almost pure black metal track before surprisingly melodic guitar lines enter the scene culminating in an almost classic guitar solo.

Those few examples already show that there is a lot to discover on ‘Black Heart’. Some might find the eclectic mixture rather confusing. Others – like me – will be intrigued by the pretty unusual blend. The YouTube videos of some of the songs had already received some good feedback so I presume the album will be received quite well by Doomsday Ceremony’s followers. ‘Black Heart’ is a more than solid album. The only critic I have is the sound which could have been more powerful for my taste. That would have given some of the tracks a lot more impact especially on the heavier songs like ‘I Am’.

8 of 10

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