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While Heaven Wept - Of Empires Forlorn

The gods of doom are shining down on us, as While heaven wept have delivered a master class of epic doom metal the like of which will be hard to top this year. Grand, symphonic, vast production, huge powerful songs, this album has it all. The first track “The drowning years” begins with the sound of the ocean, some bell tolls and keyboard lines, before smashing in with the mighty riffs. And when Tom Phillips fantastic vocals kick in, your sent into epic doom heaven. The second song “of empires forlorn is one of the albums best tracks, a driving wall of guitar noise astride beautiful keyboard line and another stunning vocal performance. The use of acoustic guitar also fits perfectly. Its really hard to overstate the quality of the songwriting here. And the production is really quite stunning, blowing even the last Opeth album out of the water for full on power and clarity. “Voice on the wind” is a slower, more dreamy epic but again so powerful with it’s monolithic arrangements and vocal delivery. “Soulsadness” is similar to the second track but has more of a complex riff structure but again faultless song writing. They even adapt the traditional song Epistle No.81 to doom metal and again carry it off with a style all there own, although the vocals at time seem a bit forces with the music. “Sorrow of ages” begins with more ocean sounds being accompanied with a tinkling keyboard melody before more huge doom riffs swamp your speakers. The final track “from empires to oceans” is a keyboard version of the second track, which is a bit of a let down for a final track, I would of preferred to have a new guitar led track. This is only a minor quibble though. This album is just magic, really a landmark in a genre that many in the metal scene believe has it’s day. Not if this is the quality of music epic doom bands are striving for now. A brilliant album from a highly talented group of musicians.