I give it up, I give in – this is love, this is sin.
A brief glimpse of hope in a life fucked up by the turmoil of loss and betrayal. Calm resolution when facing the end. The melancholic ecstasy of dying love, serenity in the eye of a storm that never comes, growing crescendo ending in a whisper.
This album is a whisper. Sparse instrumentation telling of sadness, hope, loss, everything. A violin. There, a snare ostinato to the march of boots, an ominous rearing of heads of no regret & fuck-all attitude. A near-inaudible vibraphone somewhere in between. There, a slow djembe rhythm, bitter-sweet in its pleasantly soothing grooves. The only constants are the deep, calm, Michael Gira-esque vocals, a laid-back acoustic guitar repeating downscaled riff fragments, and the searingly triumphant trombone (the latter BEYOND DAWN’s trademark – sad and grand without being whiny or epic; solemnity without pomposity, beautiful all the way through).
That is what BEYOND DAWN are, or were. Bitter-sweet. So deep in their tar-pit of pale blue melancholy that nothing matters, but still detached in their ironic stances. Or maybe those aspects complement each other. The same thing, raising a middle-finger in the deepest dark against the light rushing towards you, but still spreading their arms to embrace and love whatever destiny is approaching.
The vocals might leave something to wish for in regards to tuning and range, and the songs might not always be as exhilarating as you’d wish – BEYOND DAWN never were a favourite band of mine, and it’s fairly easy to grow tired of the individual parts of their decade long evolution from a young avant-garde/death/doom combo to the electro-weirdness of 2003’s swansong Frysh. I rarely listen actively to this band for more than a few weeks in a row, but I keep returning, constantly. There is a feeling, a certain ambience present on all their albums despite their diversity, nowhere else to be found; never submitting to conformity or whatever, BEYOND DAWN kept to their guns, and regardless if you like them or not, they were one of the most respectable, thought-provoking and unique bands emerging from the Norwegian 1990’s.
In Reverie is found in between the extremes of BEYOND DAWN’s aforementioned evolution; a placid middle station or an island in a dreary no-man’s-land, it is exactly what it’s called. In reverie.
Release: 1999 / 2005
Label: Duplicate / Eibon Records
Avantgenre: Malaise (post-)Metal
Official site: http://www.myspace.com/beyonddawnofficial
Review online since: 07.07.2009 / 13:24:24
* Originally By Joy Division