Sinister Downfall

Album Title: 
A Dark Shining Light
Release Date: 
Saturday, May 25, 2024
Review Type: 

[released on May 25th 2020, yet the scroll-down menu does not go back that far anymore...]

Recently I was listening to A Dark Shining Light again. It is almost exactly four years ago that this album got released. Since I did not write a review on this recording yet, but seen the fact that it is nothing but a masterwork, I will write down some of my ideas and thoughts about it.

A Dark Shining Light was created by Eugene Kohl and consists of five majestic compositions, having a total running time of fifty-one minutes. The album brings the opposite of light, joy and happiness, yet also the essence of beauty and elegance. This album once more stands for utterly bleak, captivating Funeral Doom, mesmerizing and dreamy, dense, oppressive and grim. The material is very melodious, with long-stretched harmonies of multitudinous strings, injected by semi-acoustic fragments and astonishing leads. This gets accompanied by a rhythm section that is as intense as it is supportive. The bass and rhythm guitars paint a bleak-coloured background, pointing at a distant hint of light behind the horizon, while the very fine drums and percussions strengthen the unstoppable forth-crawling and expanding textures. The narrative aspect get sermonized through ultimately deep yet intoxicating grunts. Besides, Sinister Downfall make use of some fine (grand) piano based intermezzi as well (albeit less prominent compared to The Last Witness), which do fortify the classic essence behind, and beneath, the sonic obscurity.

The result is overwhelming, like many encompassing particles of doom and despair being embraced by an entombing nebula, dwelling through an abyssal realm, fading into a bottomless void, guiding you through enclosing hypnosis and inseverable nostalgia.

The production is of a majestic level, for being overwhelming through the different layers of instrumental and vocal effort.  It sounds like one huge wave of aural essence, like a rampart of dark-sonic vigour. But the best thing is the well-balanced mix, showing all elements in their natural greatness: lead and backing strings, acoustics, voices, drums and percussions. It’s the whole experience, the fine interaction and interplay, that provides the paramount grandeur.

Just like the debut Eremozoic and the third album The Last Witness, A Dark Shining Light (which is the second full-length under the Sinister Downfall moniker) got released in a lovely partnership in between Funere and Weird Truth Productions, once more assisted by Satanath Records. The physical edition is a digipack compact-disc, which includes such captivating (cover) artwork (the chains reappear in close-up in the booklet), which undoubtedly fits to the concept and atmosphere of this Aural Art. The twelve-page booklet contains the happy lyrics (besides the aforementioned pictures of rusted chains). It is not sold-out yet, but it will soon (especially after this cheerful review)…