Man Of Two Visions
posted on 11/2008 By:
Is doom metal allowed to feel this good?
The idea of "happy" doom may seem strange to some readers, but that's essentially what’s on the cooker with these Virginians. Well, perhaps "happy" is too strong a word...
"Hopeful" doom. Yes, that’s it. Hopeful.
Despite what many have been lead to believe, this genre ain’t only about being slow and gloomy; the doom genre actually bends and twists into all sorts of disparate branches. The Valkyrie brand, for example, just so happens to playfully scratch ribs with sunny, warm feelings of smiling optimism. Just listen to "Dawntide's Breeze" and read along with the lyrics if you need a quick pick-me-up to your day:
"Confront the darkness in yourself
You can’t rely anyone else
Just walk the path
That puts your mind at ease
And float away on dawntide's breeze."
Just like a cool breeze through a window screen, the Valkyrie formula offers a refreshing respite from our busy, workaday lives. The recipe is also fairly unique: blend fat-n-heavy cuts of traditional Vitus-styled riffs with generous doses of luminous Thin Lizzy attitude, melodic Maiden guitar antics, and wrap it all up with some of the most delightfully harmonized vocals to be heard in heavy metal today -- that’s Valkyrie in a nutshell.
Those familiar with the band through their equally enjoyable '06 debut will likely notice a couple subtle shifts: a hair less emphasis on vocal harmonization throughout each tune, and two instrumental tracks that stray fairly far from the traditional doom path (“The Gorge“ sounds like a lost Uncle Tupelo cut). But there's honestly not a sour grape amongst the bunch here, folks. Man of Two Visions is chock-full of the band’s signature hazy grooves and LOADS of dueling melodic solos, so highlights are aplenty. But the feather in this particular cap would be the beautiful “Apocalypse Unsealed”, which opens and closes with a crushingly doleful doom riff that sandwiches an otherwise grandly triumphant, galloping tune. It’s one of many songs from this fine record that will stick in your head literally for days.
Honestly, I can't think of a single reason why any fan of good music should deny themselves the joy of listening to a record like Man of Two Visions. This album offers a ray of sunlight to an otherwise gray day, and it's one I know will have the kind of legs necessary to keep it in rotation for many years to come. I say kick off the work shoes, pop open a frosty one and let Man of Two Visions float you on a breeze to a better place.
Register to post comments.