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My Dying Bride: An Ode To Woe (CD/DVD)

Recorded during the tour for their album A Line of Deathless Kings; An Ode To Woe captures Gothic Doom Metal giants My Dying Bride in concert at their gloomy best. The release comes to us in a deluxe digi-book that delivers not only a stunning audio of the bands performance but also a video of this same show. Since the DVD features one additional song that is not presented on the audio CD I will line out the commentary about the film as opposed to that portion. Filmed in April of 2007, I found that this was a great release because it not only was delivered in short order after its recording but it is also one that makes sure to cover a lot of the bands back catalog. They are a band that I had not been all that exposed to based on their availability in certain regions so a comprehensive live set from them that gives you two products for a reasonable price is not only worth the price of admission, but one that will help educate the listener on the material from their past. If you are one of those listeners who has only their name as reference, then let me inform you about the band a little more. Formed in 1990 by guitarist Andrew Craighan and vocalist Aaron Stainthorpe, together the pair were part of the big three bands that are credited as being founders of the Gothic Doom Metal genre. The other two are Anathema and Paradise Lost. There is a lot to absorb across the thirteen tracks delivered on the DVD film and I am sure that it will send many listeners to their favorite online retailer to order up copies of the bands past works. Favorites of mine included the incredible "Catherine Blake" which was not only a romantic sounding Gothic number, but also one that touched upon some classic Death Metal themes during its middle section. Gothic Doom is a slow and crunching sound that I find easy to be wrapped up inside and enjoying with ease. If you are a fan of the kind of thing that bands like Type-O-Negative did with albums like Bloody Kisses and October Rust then My Dying Bride has a lot of good to provide to you. Another favorite of mine was "The Cry Of Mankind", which is an older tune and often named as a classic in their repertoire. A lot of this kind of music has a consistent groove to it and is often slow and the melodies lead to similar chords and ending riffs so it might take the novice fan a couple of turns at it to enjoy it best. I recommend that those who are new to the band take their time with it because it is an interesting road of musical passage.

Visually this show is sometimes a little difficult to enjoy based on the extreme lighting and heavy tones that are used to give the proper atmosphere to the show. There are a lot of deep blues, purples and reds going on and while these are usually a photographer's nightmare, they are elements that truly bring you into the vibe that the band puts across. Some shots are from over the crowd so you see the whole stage setting, and be aware that there is not much doing on in the visual sense with these guys. For the most part there are close ups that put you right against the barricade or stage and if you have a surround sound system on your entertainment gear then there are times when you will feel as if the band is in the room with you. The packaging is not unlike the one that Peaceville gave us for Opeth's Still Life and I really like the way that this looks. The discs fit comfortably on either side while the center becomes the included booklet which in the case of An Ode To Woe, presents the listeners with dramatic band photos and lyrics to the songs on the recording. Overall it's a nice addition to ones audio collection and since there is a CD for this show the listener can load it up onto their music player of choice. The audience during the show is not heard from much and this is based on the manner of audio recording since they are mixed out. They seldom show signs of life but several close ups display the constant running of cell phone and video cameras which probably mean that this whole show is online somewhere to watch for free. Despite this occurrence and possibility, I suggest the curious order themselves a clean and crisp official copy like this one. There is enough included to make one realize why the band provided such a service to music by helping launch this genre and its bound to make many who purchase it seek out more from them.

Track Listing:
1. To Remain Tombless
2. My Hope, My Destroyer
3. For You
4. The Blue Lotus
5. Like Gods Of The Sun
6. Catherine Blake
7. The Cry Of Mankind
8. The Whore, The Cook & The Mother
9. The Raven Wings
10. The Snow In My Hand
11. She Is The Dark
12. The Dreadful Hours
13. The Forever People

Added: November 30th 2008
Reviewer: Ken Pierce
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 2784
Language: english

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