|Translation:||Crypt Of Fear|
Dreariness is one of the names of 2016 I had waited for with the most anxiety, thanks to the buzz provoked by the overthrowing "My Mind Is Too Weak To Forget". It was the year 2013 and the trio was able to synthetize a terribly emotional and tormented work, with elements of shoegaze and depressive black metal. This heavy burden of expectations affected my approach with "Fragments", the band's second album, released by Nostalgia Productions (a label that has recently announced its shutting down) in a refined digipak edition.
The seven new tracks proposed by the band from Rome express a different shade of melancholy, the most important feeling on which all the other negative emotions the band gives us are based, using music as a relief valve. Cured (or maybe repressed) the psychic problems from "My Mind Is Too Weak To Forget", this time the disquiet is more subtle and controlled. Glimmers of light shine through the curtain of suffering and anguish in which this solitary soul is enclosed, plagued by an absence which it feels unexplanable, on which it reflects gazing towards the skies and clouds, in a starless night. The most violent mood swings, underlined by the screaming vocals, are done — so becoming more like aggressive outburst of frustration — taking some distance from the obscure expressions of the alienated mind from the previous chapter. Clean vocals then played a leading role, with poetic nuances, sobbed and whispered, confirming Tenebra as a singer gifted with a great expressivity.
Beyond the fact they have taken a less wild and misty path, Dreariness have certainly matured, as demonstrated by the ability to keep the interest and tension unaffected, both inside individual tracks and throughout the tracklist, without falling short with the fatigue as in the second part of "My Mind Is Too Weak To Forget". Whether we are talking about the poignant melodies, the guitar feedbacks, the splendid and suggestive almost dreamy acoustic passages ("Somnium"'s incipit reminded me of Amesoeurs), or the piano sections (the short "No Temporary Dreams" takes us in an ethereal dimension), or the keyboards, everything works perfectly and with an enviable consistency. Aware of this, the band from Rome could place the suite "Catharsis" at the end, a sort of manifest that in sixteen minutes tells us the essence of the trio, reinforced by the singing by Tenebra almost completely in Italian, invoking the Moon, the Sea and the Sun.
A surprising element certainly was the electronic beat in "In The Deep Of Your Eyes", a heartbreat pounding with torment. Expanding on the subject of the rhythmic section, this time I was happy with how Torpor sounds, which drumming adds a touch of dynamism without scattering an ounce of pathos, or seeming clichéd or intrusive; beating hard in "Catharsis".
Through the entire developing of this review I tried to stay away from attaching labels to "Fragments", because to my advise the musical linchpins of Dreariness are the pure and simple emotions. Their metallic and clawing shoegaze will be able to unsettle the souls and move the hearts of a huge part of the rock and metal audience. For passion, dedication, personality and commitment: it's not random they were on my last year Top 5, don't miss out on this band and this release!