Void Moon

On the Blackest of Nights

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Skåne, Sweden's Void Moon turn back the clock to 1980s doom with their 2012 debut, On the Blackest of Nights, which liberally references influential forefathers like Saint Vitus, Solitude Aeturnus, and their own legendary countrymen Candlemass. Not for these young bucks the temptations of deathly growls or intricate, brain-befuddling technique: songs like "Hammer of Eden" and "Cyclops" unfold deliberately, uncomplicatedly, even predictably -- but with enough memorable riffs and melodies to justify their old-fashioned simplicity. In singer Jonas Gustavsson, Void Moon have a capable frontman wise enough to steer clear of operatic histrionics beyond his lung power, and a pair of instrumental interludes ("Psychic Bleeding," "The Burning Court") complements both the proper songs around them and the album's overall '80s authenticity. Having said that, there are probably no future doom classics tucked away within this material, although clear standouts "The Word and the Abyss" and "Through the Gateway" show abundant promise. In short, On the Blackest of Nights ain't bad at all as first efforts go, but now it's up to Void Moon to take things to the next level.

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