Thursday, 20 March 2014

SIGIRIYA - Darkness Died Today - Album Review

Album Type: Album
Date Released: 21st April 2014
Label: Candlelight Records

Darkness Died Today track listing:

01 Dragging The Bones
02Guided By Mountains
03 Return To Earth
04 Godspeeder
05Tribe Of The Old Oak
06 Obelisk
07 Freedom Engines
08 Sleeping With The Dogs


Beneath the soil of a Welsh valley a heavy metal life-force regained strength: rising from the ashes of psychedelic doom merchants Acrimony, Sigiriya was born. Not wanting the limitations of reforming a project long dead to them, Sigiriya come from the earthy depths, bringing hefty, tremor-inducing sonics that pay homage to the riff. In 2012, the prestigious Church Within Records (Germany) released the full length album, ‘Return To Earth’ with much critical acclaim.

Time served in the likes of Iron Monkey, Dukes of Nothing, Black Eye Riot, The Nine, Suns of Thunder and Tabularasa have forged their thick output, giving the foursome a more dynamic, meaner, leaner, earthier approach, which has developed an intense dirty sound.

Taking their name from the mystic ‘throat of the lion’ rock in Sri Lanka, their rumble has been moving the Black Mountains of their homeland and they’ve been moving the tectonic plates of the earth via shows and festivals across Europe and the UK including the prestigious Roadburn Festival, Desert fest, Stoned From the Underground among others….

The new album ‘Darkness Died Today’ was recorded live onto analogue tape at Sonic One with Tim Hamill. The mixing was done by Andrew Schneider (Shrine builder, Scissor fight, Big Business…) in New York and finally mastering with Richard Whittaker in London. The new album builds on the sonic foundation of Return To Earth and soars to even greater heights with the addition of new vocalist Matt ‘Pipes’ Williams.

The Band Members

Matt ‘Pipes’ Williams (vocals)
Darren Ivey (drums),
Stu O’Hara (guitar)
Mead (bass)


So 3 years after their acclaimed debut album – Return To Earth – one of Wales finest Doom/Stoner Metal Bands are back with their eagerly awaited second album – Darkness Died Today.

You can tell this album is going to be a blast from the very first thunderous riff from opening track Dragging The Bones which brings back memories of 90s Monster Magnet jamming with Clutch. New lead vocalist – Matt Williams – fits in brilliantly well singing his heart out right from the start. If you want crunching, heavy and hard-rocking Doom/Stoner Metal riffs then this is the album for you as Sigiriya don't fuck about. They are all about the melodies and riffs which this album is action paced with.

Sigiriya members have served time in some legendary bands such as Acrimony and Iron Monkey. So you can't deny the pedigree or talent of this near-legendary line-up of musicians. Darkness Died Today is a very soulful and reflective album as it captures the moments when life treats you badly. Though it gives you the power and courage to move onto bigger and better things.

That vibe is definitely the back-bone of one of the albums stand-out tracks – Guided by Mountains – a hard-hitting track backed up with some mean Doom/Stoner Metal riffs with Matt bringing a lot of soul and groove to the party. Though it's when Sigiriya start laying down some mean riffs you can't help but rocking out and singing along to this track. Sigiriya mean business on this album and the album only becomes more powerful as time goes by.

3rd Track – Return To Earth – starts off with a slow-paced riff before Matt brings the album to life once again. If Wales ever needed a Doom/Stoner Metal anthem then this is the track they should choose as it's a plays out like a triumphant war-cry for troops going into battle. You can feel the heavy riffage coming straight at you from all corners as Sigiriya unleash pure Welsh Rock and Roll Fury and nobody can stop them on this form.

This album is full of brilliant tracks. There isn't one bad song on the album. You won't be bored for a second. Tracks such as Godspeeder, Tribe Of The Old Oak and Obelisk show why Sigiriya are highly respected within the Wales/UK Doom/Stoner Metal scene. They are masters of the riff as Darkness Died Today is full of them. If this album was released in the 1990s when Stoner Metal was on the rise then this would be considered a classic album. That's how good it really is.

Though the guys leave the two best tracks for last – Freedom Engines and Sleeping With The Dogs. Two tracks that show what Sigiriya is all about. Fast-paced hard-hitting Doom/Stoner Metal riffs combined with superb vocals to match that gives Sigiriya such a dangerous edge. This is the finest 14 minutes on the album and it's a powerful ride you won't easily forget.

Check out the excellent artwork designed by Jimbob Isaac (HARK, TAINT) as it gives you a real sense on what the album is about. Darkness Died Today is a must have album and is potentially one of the Stoner Metal albums to own in 2014. The production is immense through out as the album has a loud and epic feel that will have you begging for more.

Brilliant. End Of.

Thanks to Darren at Candlelight Records for sending us a promo to review. Darkness Died Today will be available to buy from April 24th 2014 from Candlelight Records

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Written by Steve Howe