The Calling is a concept album by The Dark Horde – a collective of international musicians, vocalists, actors and artists – that is written and directed by Brewin. The album is a musical narrative experience featuring a supernatural horror story set to an “eighties heavy metal” soundtrack. It is the prequel to Brewin’s award-winning horror novel The Dark Horde, set in south-eastern Australia in 1989.
You don’t have to be familiar with novel to enjoy this album, thanks to a bevy of talented musicians and the desire to deliver something undeniably ‘heavy metal’. All with this thick vein of horror running through it. Something that is encapsulated by the eerie introduction of the narrator, Kevin Powe.
This is not a concept album, it’s a story that is being told. So, it’s super important that the music conveys the experience. A good book has the power to transport you into the world it creates, this album has to follow suit and impressively, it does so. Partially because of how character driven the compositions are, partially because of the narration and partially because it has head-banging heavy metal power.
Not just working as a musical experience, The Dark Horde will leave you wanting to know a lot more and likely to seek out the novel. This album serves as a prequel, the catalyst for events that will follow, so the desire to experience even more horror, is there.
Importantly though, the album can be enjoyed in a ‘bubble’. If you’re just after some old-school head-bangers; where the riffs are thrown about with complete abandon, the drums hit nice and hard, and the vocals soar in that immortal Dio way, then it will deliver. Yet, the real enjoyment comes from following the story. Listening to the lyrical content and paying attention to the narration. It’s what cuts through, it’s what stays with you and it’s what makes The Dark Horde such a necessary listen.
The Calling – The Dark Horde Full Track Listing:
The Dark Horde - The Calling (Self Released)
The Final Score - 8/10