Here comes Downfall of Gaia’s sixth album.
Announced for 2023 by Metal Blade Records, it also celebrates the German band composed of Dominik Goncalves dos Reis (guitar/vocals), Anton Lisovoj (bass), Michael Kadnar (drums, So Hideous, Brannthorde) and Peter Wolff (guitar) 15th anniversary .
Existence of Awe immediately sinks us into this deep and intense ocean of darkness before the seizing screams emerge from this harrowing landscape. The Old School patterns perfectly fit the visceral rage as well as with airy leads or the rare moments of quietness, as well as to the more virulent elements found on The Whir of Flies, a rather straightforward track letting raw screams adorn a wild rhythmic. Howlings are also darker, almost muffled, and the break allows us to breathe before being engulfed again by the wave of haunting darkness, followed by While Bloodsprings Become Rivers, a rather long track which allows the band to develop its airy riffs coupled with an relentless blast. The break comes earlier, and it will still be haunted by incisive roots, letting rage come out again before a very soft final, but Bodies as Driftwood soon lets melancholy wear with darkness again. The bass/drums duet lets dreamy harmonics lull us before the storm strikes again, followed by this cloud of screams in the background, then by this heady and dark veil leading us to Eyes to Burning Skies whose mystical introduction reveals different sounds accompanied by ominous choirs. The surge is still never far away, and it will strike without warning before bearing transcendent leads, only returning to violence on the final, just before Final Vows buries us under a jerky and icy dissonance. The rhythmic becomes more consistent to crush and suffocate us, only letting us catch our breath a bit before Unredeemable starts with a very progressive sound, letting instruments slowly build this melancholic darkness in which they strongly lock us between their melodies. The album ends with Optograms of Disgust, a track with a similar but much darker and more disturbing approach, using once again an aggressive rhythmic base to create a contrast with these possessed screams and dissonant guitars until this striking final.
Although Downfall of Gaia‘s universe plays on a very contrasted sound between its different influences, the band has always known how to manage its sound complementarity, and Silhouettes of Disgust is no exception to this rule by captivating us from beginning to end.