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Album Review: Dampf – The Arrival

Artist: Dampf
Album: The Arrival
Label: Gramophone Records
Release Date: June 3rd 2022
Reviewer: Mert Tyson

It is not often that something comes along that is truly magical and original. Dampf have created the perfect mix of melodic rock, pop, dark and mysterious yet brutal performance that encapsulates, enchants and truly transfixes the listener. The Arrival is a dark melodic joyride into the world of Martin “E-Type” Erikson. A true masterpiece of listening pleasure that will no doubt become one of the biggest albums of 2022.

Hailing from Sweden This supergroup consists of metal heavyweights from rock royalty Sabaton, Hammerfall, Bathory and Amon Amarth. Dampf have created something that is truly unique, special, and magical that is mind-blowing. A true masterpiece of lyrical and musical genius.

“Winterland” The opening track gives you a taste as to what to expect from this album. A feast of power metal that is completely flawless in every respect. Winterland is enchanting and eerie depicting a tale of passion and love in a melodic darkness that is the beginning of this beautiful story. The chorus is an almighty anthem alongside a grinding metal riff that provides the backdrop to this beast of a record.

“The Other Side” introduces itself with a mesmerizing guitar that drives this the first single. It is a journey into the spiritual and unknown asking you to not be afraid and reach out to communicate with those who have passed and the mysteries that lie within. There is a kindness and enchanting unknown to this song. The drums and guitar are a highlight joined in synchronicity by incredible almost soothing vocals that really accompany the song so well. The guitar solo is another short but perfect execution of skill and pure class.

“Goeie Me” Is another beautiful melodic rhapsody with a power metal pop riff. I still cannot explain this unique marriage of a dark and powerful metal tune with a pop groove. The chorus and melody hum along flawlessly.  A metal groove with vocals that are captivating yet dark and twisted. This track tells another story with that of serial killer Maria Swanenburg responsible for 27 know killings. This makes the song even more chilling yet somewhat compelling and seductive losing the listener within the tale of woe.

“Who Am I” The second video to be released. This is a metal track with a great riff and overtones of a battle cry of Norse Scandinavian mythology. This song is a giant killer such a big sound and mighty riff. The vocals again take pride of place amongst a metal rhapsody!

“Born on The Wind” provides a Rammstein, Nine Inch Nails mashup with a sinister eerie vocal combining a wicked heavy metal riff that has your head banging and holding the horns high. The mix again is pure genius with all instruments having their own place with clarity and space. The keyboard is alluring and captivating and shines through the chorus on this one along with the beautiful harmonies and the haunting intermission.

“Twilight Eyes” is a heavy synth feel with a masterful drum and bass sound that really drives this track.  This is my favorite track off the album, it is a rock song with a big chorus and another extraordinary example of what these titans can create. The magic of the lead and harmonic vocals is incredible. The true standout to this song is the amazing chorus that is so powerful and yet beautiful and incredibly charming in all respects. The guitars create the perfect accompaniment with a “perfect” guitar solo that brings more of that captivating melody to the party.

“Spread your Wings O’er Me” has a mix of death metal, thrash metal and power metal reminding me of early Helloween. Another masterclass of musicianship with a tight rhythm that again highlights the true musicianship and class act that is Dampf. The quality of this song is second to none with its elegance and angelic highs and harmonies torn between the passion and darkness that is the driving force that draws you in for more.  A true highlight off the album.

“Steinhaufen” This on is a headbanger with a brutal riff with a likeness to that of Rammstein. The verses provide pure power and grind but again leading up to another creative relationship of rhythm and melody within the chorus. More recognition to this perfect mix of heavy and clean that intertwine with such clarity and definition. The vocals yet again take you to a place (especially with a good set of headphones) that immerses you into a time and place where nothing matters other than this time and moment. The vocals and melody again are immaculate. The mix of instruments that create this massive sound is truly outstanding. There is so much going on.

“Jerusalem” is haunting with another beautiful example of a musical genius and a combination of vocal brilliance. There is almost a summoning of the many personalities of the band. Another luminous and radiant display of musicianship where precision and perfection enhance this story and tantalize your senses. The guitar solo is outstanding, for me one on the highlights on the album.

“From Here E-Ternity” I cannot explain what Dampf do. They can create a death metal sound and then turn it into a speed metal song that then transforms to a heavy metal classic with a pop injection. This Then gets twisted and manipulated to create this surreal melodic complexed arrangement that creates a symphony of pure enjoyment. Every song is pure genius that is echoed throughout the entirety of the album.

“Sea Me” Is the final farewell to this extraordinary album. There is a delicate and graceful tone alongside a somewhat poetic musical accompaniment. This a heartfelt and beautiful song that is performed with such a divine yet grand expression of musicianship. This is the end of the tale, this wonderful experience that has been truly exceptional, outstanding, and phenomenal in all aspects.

The Arrival does not have a single weak track. Each song transforms you, excites you and truly mesmerizes you. It has highs and lows, and the emotion is clear within every epic tune. I am truly blown away by this class act, an album like this comes along every once in a while and will go down in history 3rd June 2022 as a true masterpiece.

“The Arrival” by Dampf is available on the 3rd of June through Gramophone Records.

10/10 Pure perfection!

Hear2Zen Magazine
Hear2Zen is a "Non Genre Specific" publication that celebrates all things sensory.

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