Storm of the Light's Bane

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Storm of the Light's Bane
Dissection stormofthelightsbane.jpg
Studio album by Dissection
Released 17 November 1995
Recorded 17–30 March 1995
Studio Hellspawn/Unisound
Genre Black metal, melodic death metal
Length 43:16
Label Nuclear Blast
Producer Dissection
Dissection chronology
The Somberlain
(1993)The Somberlain1993
Storm of the Light's Bane
(1995)
Where Dead Angels Lie
(1996)Where Dead Angels Lie1996

Storm of the Light's Bane is the second full-length album by the Swedish black metal band Dissection. The album was released on November 17, 1995 by Nuclear Blast Records. This would be the band's last full-length album before Nödtveidt's 1997 incarceration for the felony murder of Josef ben Meddour.[1] It would not be until 2006 that they would release their third and final album Reinkaos, which was followed by Jon Nödtveidt's suicide and the breakup of the band.[2] As with the band's debut album, Kristian 'Necrolord' Wåhlin created the artwork. The album is widely considered a masterpiece and one of the best black metal albums ever written.[3][4] It has had significant influence on the development of extreme metal, inspiring many bands such as Watain, whose frontman played bass live with the band during their final shows.[5]

Release history[edit]

In 1995, Nuclear Blast released a Europe-exclusive special digipak version of the album limited to 500 copies, which upon unfolding formed the shape of a cross with the song's lyrics printed on the sleeves. It was re-released in 2002 as a digipak (catalogue number: NB 646-2), this time with the 1997 EP Where Dead Angels Lie as bonus tracks. The Japanese edition features the bonus track "The Feathers Fell" as track 5, in between "Where Dead Angels Lie" and "Retribution - Storm of the Light's Bane". The album was re-released once again in 2006 by The End Records in a two-disc set, and includes the Where Dead Angels Lie EP, an unreleased EP from 1994 featuring two songs from the album, and an "alternate mix" version of the full album, all remastered from the original master tapes by Håkan Åkesson at Cutting Room Studios, Stockholm, and packaged in a slipcase. This version is touted as the "Ultimate Reissue".[6]

Musical style, writing, composition[edit]

The album is notable for being one of the earliest and most successful examples of a band combining black metal with the melodic death metal sound that was developing in Gothenburg around the time of this album's release.[7] According to Metal Hammer, "While Sweden's Dissection were very much black metal in terms of ideology and atmosphere, they also featured noticeable elements of the melodic death metal movement exploding in their home country, as well as classic '80s heavy metal."[8] Dave Schalek wrote that "the songs are cold, dark, evil and extreme."[9] OC Weekly have described the album as "extreme and aggressive but also primeval and classically orchestrated with heavy echoes of drums and haunting melodies hidden throughout the darkness."[10]

In an interview, Jon Nödtveidt said that though there "everything we do is connected through death in one way or another. This is not an album where all the songs follow a story. On this record, all the songs and music are different but still have that death theme within them to tie them in some form or another." He also added that "We never limit ourselves even if we feel we play dark, death metal. We don't write our music to fit into a certain pattern."[11]

Reception and legacy[edit]

Critical reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Review scores
Source Rating
Allmusic 4.5/5 stars[12]
Sputnikmusic 5/5[13]

The album is routinely cited as a landmark album in the history of black metal, and as one of the earliest examples of a band blending black metal and death metal.[14][15][16][17] In his review of the album for AllMusic, William York described all of the album's songs as "expertly crafted mini-epics." He wrote that "There is a strong sense of thematic unity tying each song's various riffs and sections together, and the soaring, darkly majestic guitar melodies are consistently memorable. Sure, there is a little bit of melodrama here, but Dissection is most certainly on top of their game, and Storm of the Light's Bane is deservedly hailed as a landmark in the melodic black/death metal genre." Sputnikmusic wrote that "Storm of the Light’s Bane strives mainly for balance, and manages to easily succeed in this goal due to the sheer amount of attention to detail. The meticulous structure of each song gives the album a refined and almost polished feel, even with the fuzzy production values. While it’s a damn shame that Dissection weren’t able to create more material in their time together, Storm of the Light’s Bane will forever be the legacy that Nödtveidt and company leave behind." Metal Hammer named it one of the 20 best black metal albums of the 90s, noting the influence of melodic death metal, and describing it as "a melodic, majestic and gloriously epic listen that features a measured, bombastic tone yet also makes use of furious, high-paced delivery when necessary."[8] IGN included Storm of the Light's Bane in their "10 Great Black Metal Albums" list.[18] Terrorizer named it the 8th best black metal album of all time, as well as one of the 100 'Most Important Albums of the Nineties'.[19] This is a classic album in its genre." Loudwire describe it as a "milestone in extreme metal" and "one to chill the bones and the only one of its kind."[20]

Accolades[edit]

Publication Accolade Position
Metal Hammer 20 Best Black Metal Albums of the Nineties -[8]
IGN 10 Great Black Metal Albums -[18]
LA Weekly 10 Metal Albums to Hear Before You Die 2[4]
Loudwire 10 Best Metal Albums of 1995 3[20]
About.com Best Metal Albums of 1995 4[9]
Terrorizer Most Important Albums of the Nineties -[21]
Top 40 Black Metal Albums 8[21]

Track listing[edit]

Track listing adapted from liner notes.[22]

No. Title Lyrics Music Length
1. "At the Fathomless Depths"   Nödtveidt 1:56
2. "Night's Blood" Nödtveidt Nödtveidt/Zwetsloot 6:41
3. "Unhallowed" Nödtveidt Nödtveidt/Norman 7:28
4. "Where Dead Angels Lie" Nödtveidt Nödtveidt 5:53
5. "Retribution - Storm of the Light's Bane" Nödtveidt Nödtveidt/Zwetsloot 4:51
6. "Thorns of Crimson Death" Nödtveidt Nödtveidt/Norman 8:06
7. "Soulreaper" Nödtveidt Nödtveidt/Norman 6:56
8. "No Dreams Breed in Breathless Sleep"   Alexandra Balogh 1:26
Total length: 43:16

Personnel[edit]

Dissection
  • Jon Nödtveidt – vocals, lead, rhythm & acoustic guitars
  • Johan Norman – rhythm guitar
  • Peter Palmdahl – bass guitar
  • Ole Öhman – drums
Additional musicians
  • Alexandra Balogh – piano
  • Legion – backing vocals on "Thorns of Crimson Death"
  • Tony Särkkä – backing vocals on "Soulreaper"
Production
  • Arranged & produced by Dissection
  • Recorded, engineered & mixed by Dan Swanö
  • Håkan Åkesson – mastering & remastering (2006)
  • Necrolord – cover artwork
  • Oscar Matsson – photography

References[edit]

  1. ^ "DISSECTION's JON NÖDTVEIDT: 'The Satanist Chooses Death Before Dishonor'". BLABBERMOUTH.NET. 2006-08-18. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  2. ^ "DISSECTION's JON NÖDTVEIDT: 'The Satanist Chooses Death Before Dishonor'". BLABBERMOUTH.NET. 2006-08-18. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  3. ^ Distefano, Alex (2015-08-12). "The 10 Best Swedish Metal Bands". OC Weekly. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  4. ^ a b Weekly, LA (2013-06-13). "Ten Metal Albums to Hear Before You Die". L.A. Weekly. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  5. ^ "» In Conversation With Watain Frontman Erik Danielsson | Metal Assault: Interviews". metalassault.com. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  6. ^ "DISSECTION: Ultimate Reissues Of 'The Somberlain', 'Storm Of The Light's Bane' On The Way". BLABBERMOUTH.NET. 2006-04-19. Retrieved 2016-11-18. 
  7. ^ "Blackened Melodic Death Metal: A History Lesson - Page 2 of 7 - Metal Injection". Metal Injection. 2015-02-19. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  8. ^ a b c "20 of the best black metal albums from the 1990s". Metal Hammer. 2016-07-20. Retrieved 2016-11-13. 
  9. ^ a b "1995's Best Heavy Metal Albums". About.com Entertainment. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  10. ^ Distefano, Alex (2015-08-12). "The 10 Best Swedish Metal Bands". OC Weekly. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  11. ^ "CoC : Dissection : Interview : 12/13/1995". www.chroniclesofchaos.com. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  12. ^ York, William. "((( Storm of the Light's Bane > Overview )))". AllMusic. Retrieved 17 January 2009. 
  13. ^ "Dissection - Storm of the Light's Bane (album review) - Sputnikmusic". Sputnikmusic. August 29, 2015. Retrieved November 13, 2016. 
  14. ^ Andrew, J. (February 19, 2015). "Blackened Melodic Death Metal: A History Lesson In 2009". Metal Injection. Retrieved May 18, 2016. 
  15. ^ "Back in the Day - Dissection". Metal Injection. May 7, 2008. Retrieved May 18, 2016. 
  16. ^ Hardt, Bruce (November 17, 2015). "Dissection's Storm of the Light's Bane Turns 20". Invisible Oranges. Retrieved May 18, 2016. 
  17. ^ Saunders, L. (September 16, 2015). "Yer Metal Is Olde – Dissection – Storm of the Light's Bane". Angry Metal Guy. Retrieved May 18, 2016. 
  18. ^ a b Ramirez, Carlos (6 January 2009). "10 Great Black Metal Albums – IGN". ign.com. Retrieved 12 September 2012. 
  19. ^ "Rocklist.net....Terrorizer Magazine...." www.rocklistmusic.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  20. ^ a b "10 Best Metal Albums of 1995". Loudwire. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  21. ^ a b "Rocklist.net....Terrorizer Magazine...." www.rocklistmusic.co.uk. Retrieved 2016-11-20. 
  22. ^ Storm of the Light's Bane (booklet). Dissection. The End Records. 2006. 

Further reading[edit]

  • "Black Metal Foundations Top 20: The First Wave" (2005). Terrorizer 128: 42-43.