Released by Nuclear Blast Records
Release Date: March 6th, 2020
Genre: Doom Metal, Death Metal, Gothic Metal
Lena Abè – Bass
Aaron Stainthorpe – Vocals
Andrew Graighan – Guitars
Shaun Mcgowan – Keyboards, Violin
Jeff Singer – Drums
Neil Blanchett – Guitars
Your Broken Shore
To Outlive The Gods
Tired Of Tears
The Long Black Land
The Ghost Of Orion
The Old Earth
Your Woven Shore
This year marks the thirtieth anniversary of the English band My Dying Bride, defined as one of the doom metal masters, together with Paradise Lost and Anathema. The group has released thirteen studio albums in their long successful career. Even though everything has been put on hold due to very serious adversities, the British sextet has managed to return back to action with their fourteenth effort “The Ghost Of Orion” through label Nuclear Blast Records.
For three decades, My Dying Bride has conquered the music world over with their own typical dark sound of smashing riffs, sorrowful violins and keyboards, expressive growls and painful singing of their leader Aaron Stainthorpe. Their previous studio albums were usually focused on stories about despair, pain, loss in an atmosphere of infinite melodrama and their songs have inevitably become the soundtrack to personal situations in their fans’ lives. Meanwhile,
the last five years since “Feel the Misery” have been too real for the band and this new record is the result of a slow writing and recording process. This was a natural consequence of the severe but thankfully overcome health issues of frontman’s Aaron Stainthorpe daughter and of the group’s lineup changes. At first, guitarist Calvin Robertshaw parted ways with the band two years ago. Moreover, drummer Shaun Taylor-Steels left the band just right before their entrance to the studio for the new album. My Dying Bride has managed to move on and “The Ghost of Orion” is the first record under the wings of the giant German label.
The opener “Your Broken Shore” is an outstanding track, it includes amazing riffs and nice melodies and a great interpretation by Aaron Stainthorpe. “The Solace” could be considered as an experimental song where Lindy Fay Hella’s magnificent voice enhances the beauty of the melodies. “Tired Of Tears” is one of the highlights of the record, where the sorrowful performance of the frontman gives the most realistic view of his family drama and he manages to transmit these melancholic feelings directly to the listener.
There are some considerations to make about a couple of songs, “To Outlive The Gods” and “The Long Black Land”: these tracks are too long for the elements that they contain, maybe some major variety would have been necessary. The band has made long songs in the past, but there were enough reasons to justify their duration. Moreover, the title track consists of a repeating colorless melody which doesn’t add that much quality to the album. “The Old Earth” tends also to be repetitive at its final part and it somehow becomes a less interesting track for the listener.
The closing instrumental tune “Your Woven Shore” leaves the sensation of an unfinished album, maybe because of the band’s adventures during the whole process. The production is very professional and spotless: the violins, the cello sound very good and the vocal parts are impeccable. Amazing work has been done on the drums by Jeff Singer, but on the other hand, the production gives more emphasis to the lack of memorable riffs in this record, with the guitar parts having less impact in relation to previous works of the band.
“The Ghost Of Orion” is a good record that aims to get the band out of their dramatic personal adversities and help My Dying Bride get back into full-time activity. On the other hand, if the band is still able to create good albums under difficult circumstances, this could make their fans think they can do even better in their future.
Written by: Katerina Paisoglou
My Global Mind – Staff Writer