If there’s any recurring theme in the history of metal, it’s the meeting of different styles and flavors that lead to unique, recognizably new sounds. Oftentimes, these combinations come off as a bit jarring at first, particularly to devotees of the original styles. Styles like crossover and metalcore have often placed metalheads, hardcore kids and punks awkwardly into the same room, and the results weren’t always peaceful. Over time, however, these combinations become accepted parts of the canon and proceed to be combined with other styles and on and on it goes.
I heard about one interesting case last year – apparently, there’s a British band out there called Light of the Morning Star combining black metal with…darkwave!? It’s true! Hell, the creepy splash of purple makes their Cemetery Glow EP look like the gothic cousin of De Mysteriis Dom Santhanas. But the band’s apparent homage to the legends of old is no gimmick, as they come with excellent songwriting ability in terms of riffs, vocal melodies and the use of drums to summon devilish shadows into your speakers. And those super-low vocals! Think of a cross between Peter Steele and Aaron Stainthorpe, and you’ll know what to expect. Though I’m not sure if I should call this a “band,” as it consists of a sole member going by the name of “O-A.” Perhaps another black metal homage, they always did like their pen-names.
Sounds pretty cool, right? Good! Because they have a full-length album out today on Iron Bonehead Productions called Nocta.
Light of the Morning Star is definitely a band to watch in the future. The blend of black metal dark energy with gothic romanticism stirs the imagination and paints an atmosphere of dungeons, ghosts and haunted crypts – but in a way that’s compelling rather than just silly. And as you can tell by the new title track, the band definitely knows how to get a song stuck in your head (yea that piano line is staying with you for days).
So, if you always wanted something that gives you the same feeling as Mayhem, Satyricon and Samael but played like Bauhaus, Joy Division, and Jesus and the Mary Chain – with a touch of St. Vitus and Candlemass – follow the Light of the Morning Star.