The perfect swansong release

Three years after they vanished almost as quickly as they appeared, Daemon Pyre are saying their final goodbyes in the most appropriate way possible.

Serpent Gods and a Dying Sun is the second and last album for a band that blazed its way through the local metal scene on a mission of crushing melodic death conquest for all too brief a time.

While still recognisable as the same band that cut their sterling, if a little formulaic, debut, Daemon Pyre has upped their game dramatically, lashing out with an expanded sonic palette and songwriting diversity. Clean strumming heralds the arrival of the scathing Dying Spark just as the melancholy string coda of Eternal Sky adds a classic At the Gates touch to Daemon Pyre’s thunderous melodic death metal assault. Laudem Blasphemous delivers an off-kilter, stop/start arrangement and a snaking solo that glides from a moment of quiet unease as the track changes direction again and again. Decay is pure savagery, Sam Rillatt delivers a career-defining performance as the band explode a blast furnace of blackened death metal around him.

Rillatt positively revels in his role here, unleashing booming deathy growls and occasional snatches of dark cleans alongside a howling rasp that adds further character to the band’s broader sonic palette this time out; stepping away from the scene for a few years seems to have rejuvenated and reinvented him as a metal vocalist. For an album spread across so many sessions and years, and with two different drummers – journeyman death metal veteran Kevin Talley and NeO’s Dan Presland – Serpents Gods and A Dying Sun is remarkably cohesive. A solid advancement and development from their debut, this is the perfect swansong release from a band that should have been bigger.

  1. Red Sun Phenomenon
  2. Laudem Blasphemous
  3. Enslaved God Scenario
  4. Eternal Sky
  5. Dying Spark
  6. Decay
  7. Hopeless One
  8. Northern Light
  9. The Serpent and the Master
  10. Unto a Dying World