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NORTHERN CROWN - In A Pallid Shadow

Release date July 3, 2020 (Bandcamp)

Fans of epic doom metal rejoice, Northern Crown has created an intoxicating full length that is sure to provide hours of listening pleasure for you. The Floridian's In A Pallid Shadow is one of those rare albums where each track is not only different from each other, but the totality of the album agonizingly crafted into a enticing package begging for concentrated listening sessions.

Opener "Leprosarium" introduces us to the opus, lurching forward in fine Candlemass form, mid-tempo doom with stellar singing and guitar soloing, along with backing keyboards adding a slight prog element to their sound. "The Last Snowfall" follows, a glorious track that is so memorable that it will likely land in my list of the top five doom metal tracks of 2020.

The subdued and haunting "A Vivid Monochrome" follows, the piano-with-vocal opening gradually building in drama and power to melodramatic heights. The five track, thirty-one minute release is capped by two epic nine-minute songs returning to the traditional epic doom of the opener. At first listen, I found them weaker than the initial three ditties, but after multiple listens their stature continues to rise.

Can't wait until my next listening session with this release!

(8.5)

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