Release DetailsLABEL Ulterium Records
RELEASED ON 6/3/2007
Calling The Earth To Witness
posted on 10/2007 By:
In true Swedish fashion, the guys in Darkwater came together to make some metal and it turned out pretty damn good. Calling the Earth to Witness is an album of progressive power metal that has enough technicality and balls to hold my interest. The production is very good for a debut album, although I rarely come across power/prog with bad sound. The guitars shine right through along with the keyboards, while the bass is not only audible, but it adds a healthy thump to the mix.
Henrik’s voice is on the higher side of the vocal spectrum, but the dude can belt out tunes, with a style that ranges from mellow, almost adult contemporary ballads, to falsettos straight out of the 80’s. It works for Darkwater. They use keyboards well, adding both atmosphere and occasionally being the dominant instrument while the guitar takes a rhythm role.
I hear similarities to older Evergrey in bits and pieces, most notably at the very start of the album. They play eerie keys over heavy chords, to great effect, eventually turning the mood more upbeat and taking on a traditional power/prog feel. What I like about Darkwater is how they focus more on mood and writing coherent songs rather than audacious displays of musicianship. They write long opuses, generally in the 8-10 minute range, with mostly enough twists and turns to keep the listener’s interest. “Tallest Tree” is a good example, with plenty of variety between mid-paced verses, noodly solos, thrashy instrumental sections, and gentle piano-led breaks.
Calling the Earth to Witness is a commendable album of power/prog that goes in slightly more of an atmospheric or gothic direction, rather than towards a neoclassical sound, which is a nice change. I recommend that fans of the style give Darkwater a fair shake and keep an eye on these five Swedes.
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