Golden Dawn - Masquerade
Napalm Records
Gothic Black Speed Power Metal
10 songs (47'11)
Release year: 2003
Golden Dawn, Napalm Records
Reviewed by Jack

This album should have been reviewed some months ago but one thing after another, I didn’t have time to do it and then I just forgot about it. Anyway, Golden Dawn is another newcomer from the Austrian based label Napalm Records. They are not really newcomers since they released their first album The Art Of Dreaming through Dark Matter Records 8 years ago.

Golden Dawn might be labeled as gothic metal, although they clearly have black and speed metal influences. On the first song Silent Inferno they vary from classic gothic metal to raging black metal. On the other hand, the instrumental second song Doomsday Celebration clearly shows their speed metal influences. They also have two session male vocalists and also one female session vocalist to bring in more diversity. Alive And Immortal again shows their classic speed metal influences while the vocals show both the gothic and black metal influences. Song four, Where Dragons Reign is another face of the band as this one sounds like a power metal song, just as song five Masquerade that mixes both speed metal and power metal. It also has light touches of gothic and black metal, while the male vocals remain for the most part those of a power metal band and mostly sound annoying. It goes on like this until the very end of this record. Song six, Enthralled By Unknown Dimension is by far the fastest and most raging song on the album, but not the one closest to black metal due to its techno metal beat and remains a clumsy song. Song seven Unborn Again is close to its predecessor but at least isn’t too clumsy although the male vocals don’t sound entertaining at all. Song eight A Memory’s Reflection is an all instrumental track as well. I don’t really understand why bands put those instrumental tracks in the middle of their albums. They are great for an opener or closer. Song nine Sic Transit Gloria Mundi (does anyone understand the title ?) is an epic song that reminds me a bit of Tiamat’s Clouds era while it remains clearly below what Tiamat did best at that time. Finally the last song is a sweet ballad called Angel and it doesn’t bring anything to this record as I couldn’t see myself playing this music in the family car just for this song, and I am not the guy either who makes compilations of sweet metal ballads. Nice song though.

Trying to mix different styles and influences, the band fails to reach an audience as people tend to be mostly sectarian in the world of heavy metal. I don’t mind listening to speed, power or true metal, but I like it more or less when a band stays only in this genre and Golden Dawn’s music remains mostly clumsy and sometimes out of place.

Killing Songs :
Where Dragons Reign, Silent Inferno
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