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dod grauimlicht
Artist: Diary of Dreams
Title: Grau im Licht
Genre: Electronic Darkwave
Release Date: 16th October 2015
Label: Accession Records

Album Review

If you keep a diary or have ever gotten your hands on one you'll know that the lines in it are brutally honest and most sincere. So are DIARY OF DREAMS who have written their 12th chapter entitled ‘Grau im Licht’ (‘Gray in Light’). The twelve new songs are relentless regarding its theme as they make us face what's truly going on around us: There's “war, destruction, fanaticism, egoism, suffering and mourning as far as the eye can see.” No wonder that all these grievances on planet earth lead to feelings ranging from maddening grief and sorrow to a benumbing emotional void. Such a dark subject matter obviously calls for a music album drenched in doom and gloom. However, this doesn't mean ‘Grau im Licht’ simply presents songs of lamentation, the record rather makes a statement; crushing guitars and hard beats in the more aggressive tracks as well as ambient electronics and lyrical ballads à la DoD are a clarion call for compassion and against all the madness.

The opening track ‘Sinferno’ - which presents an interesting neologism in its title, a blending of the words “sin” and “inferno” - is a truly forceful song about the “sacrifice [of] rational thinking”, trying to “choke insanity in [one's] head”, and a demand for “liberty”, as mastermind, composer, producer, and vocalist Adrian Hates sings. From the beginning, ‘Sinferno’ sets the tone of a gritty marching song with its synths sounding like rifle fire, prominent voices shouting “Hey!” and a steady, pounding rhythm. DIARY OF DREAMS open ‘Grau im Licht’ with firepower! And on we go through the electronic soundscapes of ‘Endless nights’ which convinces us with a beautiful chorus sung soulfully. The following two tracks, ‘Ikarus’ and ‘Krank’, feature lyrics in German. Overall, ‘Ikarus’ appears minimalistic starting with somber piano tones and a calmly sung first stanza, this way, the more effective its exploding chorus comes around and also a dramatic guitar solo building up towards the end adds on intensity. ‘Krank’ sets in with a sinister intro leading to amazing, thundering guitars that make it another gripping song. The constant ticking of something that sounds like a clock in the background contribute to the threatening vibes that ‘Krank’ spreads. There's also a calmer midsection featuring cinematic piano tunes underneath polyphonic vocals with one almost operatic sounding voice in the background pleading, “Lass los!” (in English, “Let it go!”) as the dangerously ticking clock sets it again and then shattering guitars and drums join in.

In-between two great mid tempo tracks, ‘Die my phobia’ and the powerful ‘SinnFlut’, which is borne by Hate's amazing low voice, there's the tranquil title track ‘Grau im Licht’ offering a perfectly moody song for reflection. Calm piano chords, some synths, and a pounding beat create a less-is-more tune putting Hate's melancholic vocals and brooding, introspective lyrics into focus, which all together leaves a deep impact. After the expressive and more up-tempo ‘HomeSick’, the sinister intro of ‘Schuldig!’ promises another expressive DoD-song and Hate's doomy baritone once again contributes to the darksome atmosphere. It follows the shortest track on the album, ‘the Hunted’, featuring more prominent guitars. A more mysterious ambience is created in ‘mitGift’. It's post-apocalyptic sounding intro with whispered vocals in the background and minimalistic lyrics with repetitions of lines, such as, “Nein, ich bin nicht ich!” (“No, I'm not me!”) have a truly powerful effect.

With ‘mitGift’ DIARY OF DREAMS build up tension before the end. If you're listening to this cinematic song with breathless suspense the captivating closing track, ‘Schwarz’, in English “black”, will give you time to exhale again. Lyric-wise, ‘Schwarz’ gets even more reticent consisting of just three words, yet, the notions behind them are just as profound as DIARY OF DREAMS' music always is. It begins with the repetition of the German word “Weiß”, which means “white”, and its echo accompanied by sole piano notes. As this nine-and-half-minute-long meditative song develops, the word “Grau” (“Gray”) takes over and the track gets more and more intense, before finally, around minute five, we reach “schwarz” - “black”. The following four and a half minutes are filled with soughing reverberation as ‘Grau im Licht’ slowly and calmly dies away providing its listeners with ample food for thought.

All in all, the lugubrious ‘Grau im Licht’ presents another deeply moving and evocative DIARY-record that is characteristically full of atmosphere. There's no doubt about it that the loyal DoD-following will celebrate the melodic melancholy on the one hand, and brute force, on the other, the profound and enigmatic lyrics, and the somber vocals in this new chapter to be released in October 16th, 2015.


01. Sinferno
02. Endless nights
03. Ikarus
04. Krank
05. Die my phobia
06. Grau im Licht
07. SinnFlut
08. HomeSick
09. Schuldig!
10. the Hunted
11. mitGift
12. Schwarz


Adrian Hates – vocals, guitar
Gaun:A – guitar, bass, vocals
Felix “Flex” Gerlach – guitar, vocals
Dejan – drums

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Cover Picture

dod grauimlicht


Music: 9
Sound: 10
Total: 9.5 / 10

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