‘Beyond The Pale’ by Sweden’s Wheel In The Sky is a concept album about darkness and death. The album contains an overflow of melody and a dark gothic energy. The band is obsessed with mystical and religious imagery, obscure politics and harbour a morbid fascination for immolations and blood sacrifices, while trying hard to incorporate it all into a tasteful setting. The album will be released on August 31st via The Sign Records.
Staking their claim for rock oddity of the year, Rivers of Dust comes along with a vibe that reminds of old-school drive-in movies, leather jackets and motorbikes. Upbeat riffs and catchy vocals do their best to leave their mark but at over 7-minutes it just goes on to long especially as the energy begins to drop at the end fading into a tune that can be best described as a musical toy that plays above a babies cot.
The title track and Far Side of Your Mind follow that with short but quite different styles. The former continuing the old-school rock rhythm while the latter is a slow, morose number.
The dark gothic energy promised shines through no matter the pace of the song. Invisible Eye drips atmosphere with its simple but ear-wormy melody. Then we get Burn, Babylon Burn and its faster rock beat that lacks a killer hook before The Only Dead Girl struggles to really take off.
Beyond the Pale is a difficult album to invest in partially because it fails to capture the imagination. A perfectly enjoyable listen but once it ends you might be struggling to pick the tracks out of a line-up. Often the best moments come when tracks are slow and meticulous such as on the great Afterglow.
Wheel in the Sky – Beyond the Pale Full Track Listing:
1. Rivers of Dust
2. Beyond the Pale
3. Far Side Of Your Mind
4. Undead Love
5. Invisible Eye
6. Burn, Babylon Burn!
7. The Only Dead Girl
9. The Weight Of The Night
Wheel In The Sky - Beyond The Pale (The Sign Records)
The Final Score - 6/10