"Under the Bleeding Sky" (Candlelight USA / Karmageddon / New Aeon; 2004)

Reviewed by Christopher J. Kelter


Although Final Dawn have been around for about four years and have released a number of demos they've slipped under my radar and they've probably slipped under yours, too. "Under The Bleeding Sky" is Final Dawn's first official full-length release as it combines some of their previously recorded material along with three new songs.

Final Dawn combine equal parts melodic death metal, death thrash, and black metal into their own boiling cauldron of metallic goodness. You'd think this particular brand of mixing various metal styles would not yield much in the way of anything interesting to hear, but Final Dawn somehow manage to make it worth listening to. "Under The Bleeding Sky" is not earth-shattering, but the eight songs here are more than competently performed and well executed. The production is neither helpful nor detrimental to the overall presentation, but everything is clear and balanced.

At the heart of "Under The Bleeding Sky" is melodic, aggressive metal - and we all know there are a lot of folks interested in this particular style. "Under The Bleeding Sky" doesn't seem like it is aiming for a lowest common denominator fan base, but it will certainly appeal to the broad spectrum of fans that like this particular genre. Final Dawn appear to have benefited from the growing interest in Finnish bands and certainly no one would find fault for seeing the band on a big label. In reality Final Dawn sound more like they're from Sweden than Finland although I would hardly consider that to be a slight against them.

"Under The Bleeding Sky" doesn't really offer anything new, but as I've hinted earlier in this review you're unlikely to find a band that combines these styles as well as this one does. If Final Dawn sticks to this particular style, doesn't get too cute with broadening their sound even more, and truly tries to find its niche, then the band should expect a small, but ever growing, fan base throughout the years.

"Under The Bleeding Sky" was produced by Final Dawn; engineered and mixed by Nino Laurenne.

Final Dawn: Vesa Mattila on vocals and guitar, Marko Leiviska on guitar, Toni Laine on bass, and Mikko Tormanen on drums.

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Rating Guide:

A classic. This record will kick your ass.

Killer. Not a classic but it will rock your world.

So-so. You've heard better.

Pretty bad. Might make a nice coaster.

Self explanatory. Just the sight of the cover makes you wanna hurl.

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Copyright 2004 by R. Scott Bolton. All rights reserved.
Revised: 13 May 2024 14:45:21 -0400.