REVIEW: No Dawn – Drain To Revive EP

Band: No Dawn
Album: Drain To Revive EP
Release: 2010
Label: Self-released
Genre: Blackened death metal

Blasting out of Norway with their début EP entitled Drain To Revive, No Dawn are a 5-piece band intent on delivering a powerful mix of melodic yet thrashy death metal. Naming influences such as Origin, Behemoth and Decapitated should give a fair indication as to what is to follow, although they mix in their own originality to keep the music feeling fresh and novel.

During the course of the five songs, No Dawn blend an impressive amount of styles together. From the more technical and progressive title track to the blackened feel of “Ascending Malice”, they show a very well-planned approach to the EP, not relenting in the death metal aspect but still showing diversity throughout. The whole band are incredibly tight, but drummer Skjeflo in particular plays intensely such as on “Soul Oppressor”, and the tempo shifts during “Lust For Torture” are subtle yet effective. Not to be left behind, the guitars of Bruheim and Sandnesmo are similarly well-executed, recalling oldschool Morbid Angel with a hint of Death, and the melodic riffs and solos fit in well, if slightly buried in the mix, along with Brandsegg’s bass. Simensen, jumping between a clear mid-range growl and a more Necrophobic-like rasp, keeps the music focused, and though the lyrical content is hardly ground-breaking, it suits the music well.

It becomes hard to pick favorites, especially among a 5-track, personally I enjoyed “Death In Solitude” the most, with its mixture of ethereal choirs an incredibly heavy low end. “Soul Oppressor” is also worth a mention for its crazy opening riff and the already-mentioned blend of blackened tech-death metal. However, there are no weak songs on the EP, those two songs merely being the most memorable to my ears.

Production issues aside, No Dawn have created a tight and controlled blast of metal that is sure to please both old and new schools of death metal alike. Anybody who enjoys a variety of death metal subgenres will likely get a kick out of this, and I’d be interested to see this style explored fully over the course of an album.

Rating: 8/10

Song to try:

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