The term 'melodic death metal' has more or less become synonymous with the Gothenburg style of melodic death metal, but we have to remember that death metal can be melodic in many other ways. The American band Daylight Dies is here to remind us about this fact, with their latest album A Frail Becoming as the undeniable proof.
The most prominent death metal feature of the album is the growled vocals (delivered by Nathan Ellis, while bassist Egan O'Rourke delivers clean vocals), but in essence the music on this fine album is a slightly harsher type of gothic doom metal which features crunchy riffs and overlaid guitar harmonies and, at times, almost lush textures. The general atmosphere is considerably melancholic, and should appeal to fans of both gothic metal and doom metal. A stable feature is, of course melody, which takes the shape of both harmonies and guitar leads (of which you can here a fine example in the beginning of 'Sunset') as well as acoustic passages and keyboards. Another melodic feature is, of course, the use of clean vocals – which have a bit of an Åkerfeldtesque feel to them.
The production is clean and crispy, and the musicianship impeccable. These guys know how to put catchy and melancholic melodies together and, although Daylight Dies, have feen accused of repeating themselves on this album, I think they have done a magnificent job of it, and – hell, if it ain't broken, why fix it?
Drawing on the melodicism and dark atmosphere of gothic metal along the lines of Paradise Lost and combining this with elements from death metal, A Frail Becoming is incredibly melodic and compelling, inviting the listener to revel in the album's very tasteful music. Fans of gothic death metal should not sit this one out.
2. The Pale Approach
4. Dreaming of Breathing
5. A Final Vestige
7. Hold On To Nothing
8. Water's Edge
9. An Heir to Emptiness