A Pale Horse Named Death is the brain child of former Type O Negative drummer Sal Abruscato. Grabbing other members from Type O Negative as well as notable bands such as Life of Agony, A Pale Horse Named Death is a powerhouse of the Gothic metal scene. Their latest album, Lay My Soul To Waste, really brings this fact home.
The whole album is incredibly melancholy, as you’d expect from any good Gothic metal band, but there is a depth to the music that you don’t find in very many groups of the same field. The first single off the album, Shallow Grave, for example has so many layers to it that move in and out as the song progresses that it makes the album flow around you; it’s like you could reach out and grab hold of the music itself. Though the instrumentals are lucid at points, the vocals are what pin the music down to keep it from just being to lucid.
The vocal performance on this album is genius. It takes a monotone quality to it that, coupled with the backing music, makes the album a dynamic layer filled performance that leaves you with a depth of music that reaches to your soul. The lyrics off this album in songs like The Needle in You and In the Sleeping Death, with their dark morbid content, continue to add to the layering effect the band is going for.
From the introduction of the album to its conclusion with the masterfully composed track Cold Dark Mourning, this album takes you on a journey. When you listen to the soft mourning of the guitars, the melodic beat of the drums, and the monotonous drone of Abruscato’s vocals to tie the whole album together you get taken down a dark path that leaves your mind spinning. Beyond just the musicianship of the album, just the atmosphere that the band aims for makes this album a legend amongst the Gothic metal scene and is a must have in any metal heads catalog.
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