The Irish metal scene is all too often known for its pagan and folk metal acts, with the occasional nod by underground black metal for its Icelandic connections. This is not all the emerald isle has to offer though as shown by DRAKONIS. A band playing a mixture of death and black metal and featuring several members of WAYLANDER, The Great Miasma is their third EP and the first to be released non-independently.
The opener and title track, The Great Miasma begins with a whispered introduction before slowly unfurling itself. Immediately the listener is struck by not only the production on this EP, which is spot on for the style, but the tightness of the music on offer. This sounds like a band who have several albums under their belt rather than a relative newcomer. The track itself is slower and focuses on melody and atmosphere without sacrificing extremity, a balance that is hard to get right. It doesn’t overstay its welcome either finishing just as it begins to run out of steam. A perfect opener and a song some more established acts could take notes of.
In contrast Let Us Pray is much more to the death than the black side of the bands style, with blastbeats and snarled vocals dominating the track and driving it onwards. The riffs and general quality of music on offer here is impressive and the band nail the style they are going for with crushing heaviness. Queen of Swarms continues the extremity but features several passages that focus on atmosphere, interwoven well into the structure of the song so neither style overpowers the other or feels out of place.
In conclusion DRAKONIS have set a very solid benchmark with this EP. If the band can manage to produce an albums worth of this quality they will certainly receive well deserved praise from all quarters. It doesn’t reinvent the wheel stylistically nor offer anything more than a solid black/death experience but The Great Miasma is certainly a record to listen to and DRAKONIS a band to watch.
The Great Miasma is set for release on December 1st via Hostile Media.
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