|Review: Northern Crown - In a Pallid Shadow|
|In a Pallid Shadow|
Year released: 2020
Genre: Doom Metal
Review online: August 24, 2020
Reviewed by: Sargon the Terrible
for:In a Pallid Shadow
Rated 3/5 (60%) (2 Votes)
I remember I heard this band's last album, their self-titled from a few years ago, and I didn't like it at all, so I was not psyched for this one. Doom can be a hard genre to do right, as done badly it is just dull, and I expected this to be dull. But no, third time is the charm, as this Florida band has managed an enjoyable album.
Northern Crown are firmly in the school of Doom bands aping Solitude Aeternus and mid-period Candlemass, with heavy riffs and guitarist/vocalist Frank Serafine providing rough-edged but melodic vocals. I think what makes this better than their last, first and foremost, is the recording is better. Doom needs a lot of space, yes, but it also needs depth of sound. The guitar sound here could have more meat on it, but it's pretty good. The riffs here are solid, and the songwriting has some snap and is not just universally slow. Serafine has continued to improve as a singer, and this time he has some good vocal lines to work with. Not all of this is gold, and sometimes, as on "A Vivid Monochrome" the band gets self-indulgent and tedious. But most of the time, this comes off pretty well. A good album from a much-improved band.
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