|Review: Phobos Monolith - When the Light Will Fade|
|When the Light Will Fade|
Label: Pest Records
Year released: 2020
Genre: Melodic Death Metal
Review online: April 30, 2021
Reviewed by: Mjölnir
for:When the Light Will Fade
Rated 4.4/5 (88%) (5 Votes)
Sometimes, I wonder why I still give Melodic Death Metal releases a chance. After all, the genre was squeezed for all it was worth back in the 2000s and still persisted for years afterwards, long after people were getting tired of it, so the idea of sitting through another band doing a decent Dark Tranquillity impression at best is one that I find tiresome. As it turns out, Phobos Monlith's debut EP is the exact kind of gem that reminds me why I still bother in the first place.
When the Light Will Fade is pitched as Melodic Death/Doom, but rather than drown in sappy keyboards mistaken to be dramatic, Phobos Monolith go at it with chugging, mid-paced rhythms that undercut moody leads that wouldn't sound too out of place on older Paradise Lost albums. The melodic work is a clear highlight, as it works in a more epic and melancholic vein than most in the genre bother with, but rather than lean on it to the exclusion of anything else, the band gives them weight through sharp songwriting, strong rhythm work, and solid coarse growls that do a good job of adding some real intensity to the compositions.
If I had a complaint, it'd be that the songs all follow a clear formula and don't really stray too far from it. That doesn't make songs like opener "The Fractal Undertow" or the excellent "Oktober (Lunar Ellipse)" any lesser for it, but they do tend to run together a bit, and I think a bit more variety in pace and structure would really put this band at the top of the genre. Still, this is very impressive for a debut, especially since it seems to be made up of mostly newcomers, and it leaves me excited for what a Melodic Death Metal band is going to do next for the first time in a very long while. Recommended.
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