Doom / death outfit My Silent Wake unleash their third album with A Garland of Tears. My Silent Wake, having risen from the ashes of legendary British death / doom outfit Ashen Mortality, has excelled at breaking the boundaries of traditional death / doom. Their first album, Shadow of Sorrow, (which also featured the 2 songs from their original demo) was a transition album which carried a very heavy gothic-tinged death / doom sound not unlike Ashen Mortality. The Anatomy of Melancholy saw the band experimenting more and resulted in a very unique and amazing release featuring one disc of melodic, dark death / doom and a second disc of dark, acoustic tunes to complement the heavier numbers. My Silent Wake's third album takes another strong step forward in the band's quest to blend unique melodies with strong and memorable arrangements without forsaking the wall of sound for which they are already well-known. Each of the 7 songs (most clocking in at over 8 minutes apiece) are carefully crafted, featuring a wide variety of vocals, including Ian Arkley's trademark baritone snarl, clean vocals from Ian, Andi, and Kate, and more blackened vocals from Jason (listeners were given a taste of this on Anatomy). The guitars soar with excessive, heavy, chunky riffage on the harder songs, and delicate soundscapes on the softer numbers. Kate, an extremely well-rounded classical musician, adds a great deal of musical depth and spirit that is typically lacking from an extreme metal release. The drums and bass also shine through like never before, causing the entire composition to flow and possess a more organic feel amidst the brain-pounding it induces. A Garland of Tears is easily My Silent Wake's strongest album to date and is one of the freshest releases in the death / doom scene in quite some time. Fans of My Dying Bride, Candlemass, Trouble, Paramaecium, Dead Can Dance, and all self-respecting fans of death, doom, gothic, metal, or just great heavy music owe it to themselves to pick up this fantastic release.
Third album from one of Bombworks’ Records top-selling bands
7 brand new songs, most clocking in at over 8 minutes each
For fans of My Dying Bride, Candlemass, Trouble, Paramaecium, Dead Can Dance, and death, doom and gothic metal
Reviews and advertising in major publications worldwide
Touring in the UK and other parts of Europe in 2008 and 2009
KERRANG! magazine (Reviewer Paul Travers) A FINELY CRAFTED SLAB OF PROGRESSIVE DEATHLY DOOM. From the name and title alone it should be quite clear that My Silent Wake are not the happiest of bunnies and A Garland Of Tears is a suitable mournful, sombre and serious slab of metal with it's roots in the death/doom sound pioneered by the likes of Paradise Lost and My Dying Bride in the early 90's. There's sheer heaviness aplenty but there's also a progressive streak present that sees lulling acoustics and even folk elements intricately woven among the dense guitars and the vocals that veer from a deathly growl to a rich impassioned croon, making this a classy and highly impressive work. KKKK (4/5)
MY SILENT WAKE "a garland of tears" (2008)
... is way to short a description, since MY SILENT WAKE can't be forced into such small boxes. The band from England cuts its own path far from well worn alleys. Therefore I am rendered as speechless as I was in the dark days of fall 2007, when I tried to review "The Anatomy of Melancholy". This year I'm confronted with exactly the same problem. How can I turn my bewilderment in words. But I have absolutly no problem to put "a garland of tears" directly at No. 1 of our charts! The world won't care...I don't care for the world.
For all of you who can't life without definitions: The sophisticated musicians move around the Doom-, Death- and Folk-Metal area (in a very broad sense). But beware, they also explore the borders to precious Gothic- and dreadful Black-Metal regimes. In between these worlds this exceptional band opens a whole set of new universes by interweaving contradictory elements without even batting an eye. This is already underlined by the first song "Tunnels". Its dark wave approach leaves the listener positively perplexed. Then the song evolves within the discrepancy of clean vocals and death growls and highlights so the numerous as well as entirely different facets of MY SILENT WAKE already at the beginning of the album. Not a fraction of a second is boring or even excrescent. Weighty Doom passages hide in mountains of Folk-Metal, just to loose and abstract themselves in veils of psychedelic sounds, before the music regains their substance and crashes back from hyperspace into reality. By then I begin to wonder if this is still the first song, or the fifth. Furthermore aggravating is the fact, that - no matter how often I heard the song already - in the second third I find myself longing to run to the next window, rip out the frame and scream to the world: "Is this real ... is this just a dream?"
And... it goes on like this. In "Pendulum" remembrances of medieval music are awoken, while "By My Own Hand" levels everything with pure Doom. And then "Cruel Grey Skies" explodes with all imaginable emotions and "Fall Of The Flightless" opens a bottomless abyss, completing the utter confusion of emotions. "So many tears ... "
Most astonishing is the profound lack of a review in German on the internet. There is none to be found yet, although this profound masterpiece has been released some weeks ago. What? Hello? This mystery even deepens, thinking of all the musical codswallop that is released daily. But since even reviews in English are scarce, I'm asking myself if all my colleagues are deeply depressed, slightly ignorant, or just dropped dead listening to this magnificent opus of one of the best bands from this world. The latter I surely don't hope, but I wouldn't wonder.
MY SILENT WAKE has exceeded itself with "a garland of tears". They manage to define their broad concern once again affectionately and vehemently. Therefore they are one of the few bands - like VIRGIN BLACK from Australia -, which have build up an insurmountable bastion of sound. Blessed are those who find the door into this bastion - for they behold a dark ocean, a universe of tears in which they are to find a handful of hope. He who surrenders to this task will prevail.
Conclusion: Notorious melancholics. Without precedent. The real great show!
Thomas Lawall - November 2008
Translation: Stephen Koszudowski
My Silent Wake - A Garland Of Tears
REVIEW ON TEETH AND DOOM WEBSITES
Despite releasing now three albums of remarkable Metal music, England’s My Silent Wake seems to go largely unnoticed. Part of this, I believe, is that they don’t belong to a singular genre. The band deftly combines elements of Doom, Death and Folk Metal utilizing four vocalists while creating waves of melancholic mastery. One can find influence on hand from the likes of My Dying Bride and early Paradise Lost, even touches of Agolloch and Amorphis. This is good stuff here.
The 11-minute “Tunnels” gets things going in fine form with dark, folk-tinged Metal goodness. A swelling clean guitar intro makes way for a soothing clean vocal passage (there’s no text indicating who did what vocals). Death vocals and huge guitars soon take over and it’s crushing. The song travels through many peaks and chasms, from the beautiful to the creepy, giving the listener firm evidence as to what the band are all about. Instrumental “Pendulum” is a piece of traditional folk styled music sounding like something straight out of a period film (or Renaissance fair). Mid-way through the album, “By My Own Hand” brings the despair in full force with is slow, trudging tempo and somber melodies. The acoustic number “Fallen Leaves” is simply stunning…beautiful piece with the vocal really shining. The added organ on “Wilderness Of Thorns”, in addition to the doubled male/female vocals, gives a funerary presence while the growled vocals sound extremely urgent and intense…especially during the blast beat section. The whole album has a bleak, sad vibe about it. Yet, lyrically, they don’t leave it at that. There is plenty of grief and anguish to go around, but My Silent Wake isn’t content to remain there, alluding to something of a “light at the end of the tunnel”, however dim it may seem.
While not necessarily turning the genre on its ear, My Silent Wake delivers a formidable album that is traditional enough for the purists, yet diverse enough for those who like a little bit of variation…nothing overwrought and nothing monotonous. Sonically, there’s a slightly raw, almost live feel about it that does nothing but add to the appeal of the music. Fans of the aforementioned bands and of the style in general can, and I believe will, find plenty to love about A Garland Of Tears and inundate themselves with repeated listens.
My Silent Wake – A Garland Of Tears
KronosMortus. hu: 10 of 10 pts.
Tollbooth. com: 4.5 of 5 pts.
Metal-District. de: 9 of 10 pts.
BurnYourEars. de: 8.5 of 10 pts.
Kerrang. com 4 of 5 pts.
Stormbringer.at: 4 of 5 pts.
DarkSide. ru: 8 of 10 pts.
Metal. de: 8 of 10 pts.
RawAndWild. com: 8 of 10 pts.
MusikAnSich. de: 16 of 20 pts.
HardSounds. it: 74 of 100 pts.
MusikReviews. de: 11 of 15 pts.
PowerOfMetal. dk: 72 of 100 pts.
MSTOS. de: 3.5 of 5 pts.
The melodies (guitars or vocals likewise) and the leads are throughout a big emotional deal, able to keep up with "The Angel And The Dark River" or "Like Gods of the Sun". Kneel down and worship! All in all an eclectic, epic work no DeathDoomster should miss. That's a great leap upwards.
Dirk Bengt/BurnYourEars. de
"A Garland of Tears" is easily MY SILENT WAKE's strongest album to date and is one of the freshest releases in the death / doom scene in quite some time. Fans of My Dying Bride, Candlemass, Trouble, Paramaecium, Dead Can Dance, and all self-respecting fans of death, doom, gothic, metal, or just great heavy music owe it to themselves to pick up this fantastic release.
Yes, this is a Doom album I deeply recommend to everybody.
A finely crafted slab of progressive deathly doom. "A Garland Of Tears" is a suitable mournful, sombre and serious slab of metal with it's roots in the death/doom sound pioneered by the likes of PARADISE LOST and MY DYING BRIDE in the early 90's.
This album would have suited well to Peaceville Records, around 1991, after they stroke a first Gothic/Doom/Death blow with PARADISE LOST and had several other successful abums with ANATHEMA and MY DYING BRIDE. MY SILENT WAKE is such a band, in fact an anachronism, a 1991 retro band, but big portion of Doom makes the music sound rolling majestically, like a gigantic river through a scenic landscape.
Sir Lord Doom/Metal-District. de
MY SILENT WAKE are successful in presenting a massive, atmospheric piece of music, able to overshadow the last winter days of every doom disciple.
The band succeeds in delivering a suspenseful and elaborated album with "A Garland Of Tears". After a few spins you will get into it and then it displays its range and delights you in case you are into this kind of gloomy sound. A real insider tipp!
Mario Karl/MusikAnSich. de
Older ANATHEMA and PARADISE LOST are surely influences for MY SILENT WAKE, or maybe more modern bands like NOVEMBER'S DOOM. MY SILENT WAKE enrich the genre by integrating unrelated genres. "A Garland Of Tears" delivers enhanced Doom entertainment every fan of before mentioned bands should undergo.
Nils Herzog/MusikReviews. de
A really interesting album from England, from a band called MY SILENT WAKE, who celebrate a fine blend of Death, Doom and Folk. Fans of bands such as MY DYING BRIDE, ANATHEMA or CANDLEMASS may find some food for cold winter days here because this album melts the ice.
Matthias Decklar/MyRevelations. de
Some die-hard fans might draw comparisons to MY DYING BRIDE and older PARADISE LOST, but this by far is not enough. MY SILENT WAKE is Albert Camus, Novalis, Franz Kafka and Buddha in musical shape, almost a symphonic poem: scenic and pocketing
Markus Sievers/PowerMetal. de
The biggest difference between MY SILENT WAKE and a lot of other real doom bands is that they have a lot of variety in the songs and lots of different genres involved. Fans of ANATHEMA, MY DYING BRIDE, TROUBLE, open-minded PARADISE LOST fans and other depressive music lovers might find this a record worthy addition to their collection.
Reinier de Vries/PowerOfMetal. dk
The band deftly combines elements of Doom, Death and Folk Metal utilizing four vocalists while creating waves of melancholic mastery.
Shawn Pelata/TeethOfTheDivine. com
Melodic death metal with a light doom element mixed in makes MY SILENT WAKE a surprisingly entertaining ride.
OUTBURN MAGAZINE - ISSUE 48
MY SILENT WAKE "A GARLAND OF TEARS"
(Bombworks Records 2009)
DIRGES O' DOOM
Within the gothic doom/death genre it's nearly impossible for critics to avoid the dreaded Peaceville Three cliche' when it comes to describing bands such as My Silent Wake. The three in question are, of course, Anathem, Paradise Lost, and My Dying Bride - all pillars of the UK's legendary and influential Peaceville Records. MSW follows in the footsteps of their elder British staesmen, delivering seven solid and lengthy dirges o' doom on A Garland of Tears. Withi this being the band's third full length in as many years, the ideas seem to be flowing quite freely for this dour quintet. A Garland of Tears displays a marked sense of maturity within the ranks of its melodic, mournful cry, where guitarist/vocalist Ian Arkley's expansive yet tasteful playing serves as the cornerstone of saddened sensibility. Indeed, Arkley - himself somewhat of a death/doom veteran, having cut his teeth in Australian doom lords Paramaecium - is the star of the show, delivering a charismatic, multifaceted vocal performance in addition to all the six suicide attempts. While most of A Garland of Tears is a traditional growled opus, Arkley's clean tone is solemn, somber, and stern enough to be commanding, without sounding too weepy or melodramatic. There will be no tears here, this album is a defintely winner. ~ George Pacheco (OUTBURN magazine issue #48 Review)