Album Review: Deadwood Lake – Immortalised in Death (UKEM Records)

Deadwood Lake are one of, if not the best atmospheric black metal bands in the UK right now. A band that doesn’t get the mainstream media attention they more then deserve but through a strong underground following have become a name synonymous with the UK black metal scene.

Melodic, Atmospheric and deeply emotional black metal. In memory of a fallen brother.

We were slow off the mark with these guys but now we’re on board, we can’t see any reason to ever get off. You can read our review of their Forgotten Hymns EP here.

Immortalised in Death is their new album and it’s no bogus claim to suggest that it might be the best stuff the band has produced so far. Here the foursome have taken their meaningful blackness, added some extra layers of sinister-ness and focused on being coherent as well as savagely heavy.

Fear not, it’s black metal. It just might challenge you a little more. It is out on August 16th 2019.

Visions From the Faded Years is a traditionalist of a start. The ringing black riffs, the howl of the vocals, the thrum of the bass and the tinny but effective drums. Layered with coldness and briefly dropping into a short melodic burst that turns the track on its head and gets the hair standing up on the back of the neck. The guitar solo in this segment is wonderful.

The March of Time has much deeper and richer sound, the roar is vocalist Bruce Powell at his most intense. While still rooted in the bleak and dark, there’s a lengthy guitar solo here that is so deliciously old school.

It’s the title track next, opening with soft guitar strumming and spoken word that talks about the pain that death can cause loved ones from the perspective of the dead person. It’s short and effective followed up by riffs that wrap around like a death shroud. Powerful heaviness and emotional melodies, this is a phenomenal effort.

Reaching the half way point, Guidance and My Ashes Will Remain keep the middle of the record nice and tight. The former laying the darkness on thickly and sounding so old-school black metal, you might have to check the release date just in case! While the latter is Deadwood Lake throwing caution to the wind with a more brutal tempo, the whine of the guitars and the drums slaying here. Both tracks are exceptionally good, the kind of music that both Deadwood Lake and fans can be so proud of.

Not done challenging the listener, Alone I Fly comes in at over 8 minutes making it the longest track on the album. Morosely beginning with soft guitar rhythms, the drums and bass join in but keep things soft and sad. This goes on for nearly two minutes until it erupts with a pained scream and rough as hell heaviness. If your mood wasn’t black before, it will be after this. You’ll love it though.

As we reach the end stages, the expectation of nothing but a continuation of the high quality black metal we’ve heard so far is front and centre. Simply put, Deadwood Lake could play it safe and just fire off two straight-forward numbers and that would be fine. Few would walk away unsatisfied. However, that’s not what they do. Instead we get two very different but still familiar sounding tracks to end things on a high.

Drowning Reality first, low with threat to begin. The tone of the guitars washing over the mind until it’s time for a more substantial sound. That tone echoes all the way throughout though, sitting evilly in the background and making sure we never quite sit comfortably.

Then it’s Vigils, a spectacular finale that is everything great about Deadwood Lake. Their ability to deliver harsh and incomprehensible bleakness blended to perfection with head-banging riffing, chunky hooks and just a touch of melody.

Immortalised in Death is a triumph of an album.

Deadwood Lake – Immortalised in Death Full Track Listing:

1. Visions From the Faded Years
2. The March of Time
3. Immortalised in Death
4. Guidance
5. My Ashes Will Remain
6. Alone I Fly
7. Drowning Reality
8. Vigils




Links

Bandcamp | UKEM Records | Facebook | YouTube

Deadwood Lake - Immortalised in Death (UKEM Records)
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