Daylight Dies celebrated their tenth anniversary in 2006 -- and after all that time, headbangers still had a hard time believing they were an American band. If you conducted a blindfold test and played Dismantling Devotion (which was recorded in 2005 and released in the U.S. in March 2006) for someone who was unfamiliar with this North Carolina outfit, he or she would likely guess, "This must be a European band. They're probably from one of the Scandinavian countries -- or perhaps England or the Netherlands." But no, Daylight Dies is definitely an American band, although Dismantling Devotion certainly sounds like something that would come from one of Europe's melodic death metal combos. This CD favors the gloomier, more goth-minded side of melodic death metal. Many bands that are considered melodic death metal have a strong power metal influence, but Daylight Dies -- much like Sweden's Katatonia -- prefers the gloominess of goth. The vocals -- usually a deep, guttural, evil-sounding growl -- are pure death metal. But while a lot of death metal is all about sledgehammer brutality, Dismantling Devotion is more atmospheric than anything. This is a disc that successfully balances aggression and moodiness, and the album could easily appeal to a goth enthusiast who doesn't care for the harsher death metal and black metal combos but will get into bands like My Dying Bride, Monolithe, Paradise Lost, and, of course, Katatonia. Once you get past the vocals, Dismantling Devotion really isn't all that extreme -- hard-rocking and aggressive, yes, but not extreme and not hammer-to-the-skull ferocious. While Dismantling Devotion doesn't break any new ground in the area of melodic death metal/goth fusion, it's a respectable, well-executed effort from these European-sounding Americans.
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AllMusic Review by Alex Henderson