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Review: Darkwater - Where Stories End
Where Stories End

Label: Ulterium Records
Year released: 2010
Duration: 57:43
Tracks: 9
Genre: Progressive Metal

Rating: 4/5

Review online: January 4, 2011
Reviewed by: Bruce Dragonchaser
Readers Rating
Where Stories End

Rated 4.43/5 (88.57%) (14 Votes)

A very commercial and contemporary outing here from Sweden's Darkwater, one of many acts making a name for themselves out there in the mire of modern Progressive Metal. Marrying the pop melodies and synth-led theatrics of Seventh Wonder with the chugging riff style of recent Evergrey, Darkwater's second album, the charismatic Where Stories End, shows a band in real command of their material, a talent resulting in nine well-crafted songs that fans of the style shouldn't miss.

The Swedes are the first I've heard to amply ape the sound of their countrymen Seventh Wonder, and at times the comparison is worryingly strong. Opener "Breathe" and its eight minute follow up "Why I Bleed" are perfect examples of Seventh Wonder's light but challenging take on the genre, while closer "Walls Of Deception" and the catchy "In The Blink Of An Eye" could have been culled from Waiting In The Wings without too much effort. Darkwater's approach is more simplistic than Seventh Wonder's, more centered on the squeaky-clean croon of vocalist Henrik Bath, with the guitars taking a backseat to the keyboards, which swirl and swaddle the rhythm section. As an album, this is exceptionally immediate, grabbing you within a matter of moments, but this gives Where Stories End limited longevity. The songs are all catchy and rather morose, despite the pop-like vocal lines, and while everything juts at mid-pace, you feel a certain rush with tracks like "Into The Cold" and the quite excellent "Queen Of The Night".

Though a touch too familiar, Where Stories End is a great Progressive Metal album, and Darkwater are certainly onto something here, something that will hopefully blossom for album number three.

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