DOWNFALL OF GAIA - Downfall Of Gaia

Downfall Of Gaia - Downfall Of Gaia

8 songs
56:05 minutes
***** ****
Moment Of Collapse


Like any good hardcore band, Downfall Of Gaia released their first records always simultaneously on several different labels, until last year, when their latest longplayer Suffocating In The Swarm Of Cranes came out only on Metal Blade, a much bigger company than those they did business before. Some may cry out “sell out!”, while others understand that every artist has the right to grab the opportunity to get their music out to even more people. Be that as it may be, some of their previous labels decided now to release this retrospective and self-titled compilations which collects the band’s debut longplayer Epos from 2010 with the songs from their 2011 split album with In The Hearts Of Emperors.

I have been slightly familiar with that latter release, and remembered that this German quartet is definitely one of the better bands in their genre. The black clad, grim looking guys all sport beards and assorted piercings, some of them are heavily tattooed, and they claim to play something like blackened hardcore, which may sound weird at first but totally makes sense once you get an ear for their music.

The first six tracks repeat the material of their debut album, beginning and ending with instrumental tracks simply titled Prolog and Epilog. It’s on these tamer tracks that their post rock influence becomes obvious, but the real treats are of course the four tracks in between, all running between four and ten minutes, and offering some fierce mix of what we used to call screamo hardcore before that genre become popular and totally unbearable. The two guitars are interacting quite harmonically, while the rhythm section builds the foundational work. It is especially pleasant to notice that the bass guitar never drowns in the mix, and also that both guitars seem to have a very equal relationship. The vocals are shared by the three axemen, and while all of them are screaming their guts out, this still gives the music an unexpected variety that adds to the dynamic tension of the material. The self-titled compilation ends with the two tracks from the split record, These Wet Feathers… and …Won’t Dry On Their Own, and the ellipses between both tracks show already that this is actually one extended twenty minute epic that portrays the band from an even more mature side than the already very tasty preceding material.

Downfall Of Gaia have always been able to start out with emotional, brutal hardcore the way it was done many years ago, and then adding layers of post rock, post metal and especially black metal to finally come up with something maybe not entirely new, but definitely incredibly convincing. I haven’t heard their last album yet, but I do wish these four talented young men all the best and a lot of success for all future endeavours. And be sure to check out this nearly one hour long compilation which will entrance you with some of the finest emotional and extreme post hardcore metal music!

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