Slumbering Sun – The Ever-Living Fire
Release date: 24/02/2023
Running time: 45:00
Review by: Alun Jones
Yeah, yeah – I know! Just keep quiet and probably no one will notice. Okay, this review should’ve been written weeks ago, but if you just keep schtum and play along, I might just get away with it, okay? Okay?! Right, they’re coming – remember the plan!
Hello there, ladies and gentlemen! Yes ‘tis I, your humble scribe, with another review of a new *ahem* album that I’m sure will tantalise your aural orifices. This time, a piece of musical majesty entitled “The Ever-Living Fire”, by a superb group of musicians known as Slumbering Sun. Comprised of members from Destroyer of Light, Monte Luna and Temptress, the pedigree is certainly top notch.
Musically, Slumbering Sun offers a collection of melodic and progressive doom that drags numerous styles into its bubbling cauldron of influences.
Opening song ‘Morgenröte‘ starts with an ethereal blend of female vocals, guitars and violins, conjuring the sort of misty morning amongst druidic stones that I might encounter on the mystical isle of Anglesey in Wales. Two and half minutes in, and a huge megalithic guitar erupts into the proceedings, and over the course of the remaining 10 minutes the band are more like an orchestra than a typical rock band – passages ebb and flow, heavy and light, revisiting themes on their journey.
Track 2, ‘Liminal Bridges’, commences with a mellow intro, before the song explodes into a shinier, brighter – dare I say, uplifting? – vibe. It’s like Thin Lizzy composed a mega Sabbath epic and decided to hurtle off into the forest with it. ‘Love in a Fallen World’ reverts to a more sombre feel again, but features a great guitar melody and builds slowly and satisfactorily.
‘Dream Snake’ is my personal highlight of the record: unsurprisingly, as it’s the most Sabbath of all the tunes here (even down to the Ozzy-like vocals). Finally, there’s just over 9 minutes of lumbering, doom-laden exploration on the title track, which manages to cover massive prog metal sections and a huge “na na na” backing vocal.
Track by track then, that’s your overview of “The Ever-Living Fire” by Slumbering Sun. The band certainly don’t aim low, throwing in a varied collection of sounds and ideas from classic doom to Celtic folk. I mean, they’re from the southern states of the USA, they’ve probably never even been to Llandudno! The album is hugely creative, but it is somewhat dense – it’ll take a few listens to appreciate. Magical stuff when it falls into place, though.
02. Liminal Bridges
03. Love In a Fallen World
04. Dream Snake
05. The Ever-Living Fire
James Clarke (Vocals) – of Monte Luna
Keegan Kjeldsen (Guitar) – of Destroyer of Light
Kelsey Wilson (Guitar) – of Temptress
Garth Condit (Bass) – of Monte Luna, Scorpion Child
Penny Turner (Drums) – of Destroyer of Light
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