...

Well, this year in metal is wrapping up, in fact we're already composing our year-end lists, but that doesn't mean there aren't a few stellar releases left coming down the pipe. For instance, Gods and Origins, a 7-inch by Northern Ireland's Darkest Era. The band's last album, Severance was one of my favorite records of last year, and while Gods and Origins is slight in comparison—only two songs, and one of them a re-recording—it's still an absolutely essential listen.

The band's mix of twin guitar harmonies, Celtic melodies, gothic atmosphere and upbeat doom is essentially unchanged a year later and that's a good thing. This sound is potent. Krum, the band's vocalist, deserves special mention. His performance here is as strong as anything you might have heard on the Crypt Sermon or Magister Templii albums that came out this year. The new song, "Elohim," sounds like it could have fit in easily on Severance as does their re-recording of "An Dagda (formerly "An Dagda Awakens").

—Joseph Schafer

...

...

Gods and Origins is out this Friday, 11/20, via Cruz Del Sur. Follow Darkest Era on Facebook.

...