Published May 06, 2016It isn't hard to discern the influences for this album, nor to draw some comparisons to both more recent bands and established legends alike. Pale Dawn mixes a classic and stripped-down style with more recent black metal sounds — particularly those of the North American scene. In a way, it's easy to imagine an album like Pale Dawn as the product of a few minds bingeing on Vikingligr Veldi and Two Hunters before entering the studio.
That said, the Berlin trio deliver four ferocious, hard-nosed songs on this follow-up that feel familiar in many ways. The rhythm guitars maintain the heaviness, while the lead explores the higher frequencies, creating cyclical swirls that carry songs from space to space. The longer track lengths provide ample room for the progression of the rolling tremolos and exchanges, particularly on "Lichtenberg Figures," which culminates in a thrilling buildup and finale.
Final track "Perihelion" reveals the early Ulver and Enslaved influences most prominently with clean, crooning voices that evoke the softer moments of Bergtatt or Below the Lights. This and "Lichtenberg Figures" are more captivating than the remaining two tracks, which feature predominantly monotonous bellowing — which, thankfully, doesn't continue throughout the entire LP — on top of tunes that don't offer quite as much substance or catchiness as the stronger cuts.
Overall though, Pale Dawn is a solid and promising record that gives the sense Sun Worship have yet to conjure up their greatest material. (Golden Antenna Records)