Thursday, February 08, 2007

Underground Gem - The Black Dahlia Murder: “What A horrible Night To Have A Curse” (Demo)

I have a friend who’s pretty good at finding rare musical items with the file sharing program he’s got, and he managed to dig up this first demo from The Black Dahlia Murder. Considering they’re working on a new full length due this year, I thought this would be the perfect time to give it a listen.

This is one of those instances where ambition and playing ability far outdo The Black Dahlia Murders ability to record. In all fairness, all the instruments are audible, but have some typical demo weaknesses. At first I thought The Black Dahlia Murder were attempting a much more black metal sound due to the guitar sound coming off kind of weak, the cymbals being so washed out and the snare drum having some clang to it. After letting it sink in for a little bit, the sound of the “What A Horrible Night To Have A Curse” certainly has better production than some popular modern black metal bands still recording today.

Those familiar with the signature sound The Black Dahlia Murder has today might be surprised to find out “What A Horrible Night To Have A Curse” is actually more diverse than their last 2 full lengths. While the almost completely Swedish melodic death metal attack from the guitars is still apparent there are completely unexpected portions, such as some mid-paced songs (instead of almost all fast songs), much less use of blast beats, a complete lacking of guitar solos, an acoustic intro (and an acoustic interlude in the first song “To You, Contortionist”) are some of the big differences in the demo. The first 3 songs flow naturally into one another. The inclusion of the high pitched dissonant guitar tones is reminiscent of metalcore, and guess what else is? Chugga style breakdowns as well. Eschewing those 2 elements basically pulled The Black Dahlia Murder out of the now over-saturated melodic metalcore camp before it became over-saturated. Considering the fact The Black Dahlia Murder was playing something more akin to melodic metalcore back in 2001 was in fact 2 or 3 years ahead of its time, especially considering there weren’t many bands to look up to in the Michigan area (as The Black Dahlia Murder are from Detroit) makes the demo a bit ahead of its time.

It’s an interesting look into the past of an important band for this era.

The Black Dahlia Murder At MySpace
The Black Dahlia Murder At Metal Blade


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