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Damnation and a Day

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Average Rating
★★★★½
(170 Reviews)

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Ninth studio album & first for Sony Music. 17 tracks of furious black metal. 2003. Damnation and a Day is the first album from Cradle of Filth that matches the group’s monolithic musical ambitions. And it’s no disappointment as they use their new-found major label muscle to excessive effect. Accompanied by a 40-piece orchestra and 32-voice choir from Budapest, they’ve raised their game, coming on like Venom as produced by Danny Elfman. Over 77 thrill-packed minutes in length, Damnation & A Day combines Cradle of Filth’s trademark pulverizing riffs, shrieking raps, and monstrous chants with grandiose harmony vocals and portentous voiceovers. Like Black Sabbath, they regularly break their fierce assault with short instrumental interludes (”The Mordant Liquor of Tears”), then rev up again with ever more manic intensity. It seems their intention is to deliver a black-metal alternative to Carmina Burana, and it’s to their credit that they come close, producing a series of scorching epics that would fit perfectly as the soundtrack to the extraordinary battle sequences in Peter Jackson’s Lord of the Rings trilogy. –Dominic Wills

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  • From the opening thunderclaps of “A Bruise Upon The Silent” which crecendos into a glorious chat and gregor accompanied by the philharmonics of a darker place, a void. Then “The Promise” explodes in your lulled existence with a force of earlier said thunderclaps. It rolls on with the sandstorm twists and confusions that fill the ears with a sense of urgent desparation. “Hurt & Virtue” bounces like a METAL STUDDED WRECKINGBALL tumbled loose from it’s chain and hammering upward and downward on the helpless concrete below. Gears shift mid song to a thorougbred gallop and winds you down an unlit road at neckbreak speed. Put on headphones and then close your eyes at 3:55 of track 3 and you can actually feel the music taking you down an old dirty winding road by horse carriage wheels bouncing on gravel at that aforementioned neckbreak speed! “An Enemy lead the Tempest” is pure technical death metal ala In Flames or groovier Six Feet Under. Double bass drums batters your ears in a stereo smackdown. An aural massage you can’t miss at 2:40 of track 4. The grandiose vision that is the theme of this epic is being fully realized by this point and like a good book you can’t put it down. By the time you get to the eliptical wrangling of “Thy Serpent Tongue” ’s opener sets you on a new journey than takes on more of an urgency from Tongue to the death metal of “Carrion” and through to the arrival of the Mighty Egyptian empire in “Doberman Pharoah.” Grand is this portion of the journey! HOLD THY HEAD DOWN WHEN IN THE PRESENCE OF THE PHAROAH! A serpent kisses your stunned lips as the Doberman visits “Babylon” and the sultry tempations of Babylon are dangled for the listener to accept or reject. “A Scarlet Witch Lit the Season” on your way through this journey but you run into the darkness that is “Mannequin” This is one of the true beasts on this cd. A metallic monster that just jumps on you and devours. A highlight. “Thank God The Suffering” in a lurching dragger than makes your white knuckles bleed. When we reach the “End of Daze”, the clouds open above the skies as the trumpets sound the coming of the days of revelations. This is not an end but only a beginning. The Journey may have ended but it is not permanent but only a respite. Cradle of Filth have left me pondering. It will leave you pondering the same. And you. And you. Hail The Filth! This is five star entertainment.

    Posted on December 11, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • This is the first Cd that i heard by COF. To tell the truth i really do like them. The CD from the first song to the last is like a horror theatric show done in music. I’m not much on alot of black metal and gothic metal but this band is in a catergory all by themselves. I like the style they present their music. I just got this Cd today and have heard it front to back. I was impressed considering i heard they are not really good and the screaming gets old. But Dani mixes everything up pretty good i think. They are the type that requires a taste for but i do like the way they put it together and for anybody that want a ride through the darkness then i say get this band and try them out. A real good starter for a person just curious about COF.

    Posted on December 11, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • Cradle of Filth are great. Too great, I guess, as people in recent times seem to condemn them, saying things like, “Their not TRUE Black Metal,” and other such rubbish. That’s fine, if high production value and amazing musicianship lowers a band in the public eye, then its no wonder the public is busy listening to worthless radio-friendly electro-pop with bottom-of-the-barrel “entertainers” with good stylists and expensive dance teachers. But if you try to say Cradle are “commercial,” you need to get your head checked. Their stance on Christianity alone should eliminate that from anyone’s mind, but the music is even further proof.

    So, on to the point at hand; Damnation and a Day. A concept album. The black sheep, as it were, of the music business. Usually reserved for prog bands(that being, more overly talented musicians not getting their due, much like Cradle) and few others. But Dani Filth’s lyrics, aided by a band of more than capable musicians (the guitarist, Paul, and Adrian the drummer being two true stand-outs in musical talent) are more than up for the task. The use of electronic elements is tasteful (an odd word to use to describe these guys, but somehow fitting) and they incorporate a few interesting and fitting samples. All together, a very enjoyable listen musically, further enhanced by the vocal workings of the demon-possessed Filth, and unbelievable range of background vocalist Sarah Jezabel Deva.

    Lyrically, Damnation and a Day is written like a masterpiece novel, a powerful tale of the TRUE ‘original rebel,’ Lucifer, cast out of Heaven for displaying emotion against God’s will. Broken up into 4 ‘acts,’ the story take us from the fall from God’s grace, to Lucifer’s temptation of Man (complete with historical and other biblical references) to his eventual position of ruler of Hell, all the while the Earth above falling to the evil nature of Man Lucifer manifested. The sheer AMOUNT of lyrics alone make this album a great READ, as I myself have spent a few hours reading over and over just the lyrics, amazed at Mr. Filth’s ability to memorize these short stories to be performed night after night in a concert setting. Just another testament to the talent and passion possessed by the band.

    I don’t believe in Heaven or Hell or any other divine idea of the Christian myths, but I still find Lucifer to be one of the most intriguing and strangely endearing characters in the history of the written word. If the Bible has given us one good thing, it’s been all the things revolving around this character. To be predestined to be without feeling or emotion, and condemned for displaying the traits of “God’s Children,” Lucifer is a misundertood anti-hero, a paragon of the nature of humanity, and that nature is NOT pretty or refined, it is bestial and self-serving. He is removed from Heaven for finding love, further proving my theory of “God” as a jealous, child-like deity, one not worth worship, but as an example of how NOT to be. This album by Cradle of Filth is by and far, one of the most brilliant CD’s in my collection, and something I believe everyone with an interest in any kind of metal should give a listen to.

    Posted on December 11, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • People who are into other extreme music, meaning not Korn or Disturbed, will find the utter beuty and sheer delight in listening to this epic album. This album is well written, well produced and well recorded with no shortcuts taken. You will find it overwhealming from the guitar riffs to the vocal acrobats that Dani Filth puts you through. The best thing about Cradle of Filth is that it doesn’t bore you with the popular and mainstream songwriting form. Songs actually build and have more to them than just an A and B section. the arrangements go beyond just your guitar bass and drums by adding a choir, orchestra and solo female vocals.So take this album home darken your room (or listen on a stormy night) and kick back with your favorite beer and smoke and enjoy the next 76 minutes for it will take your mind soaring with all the dark imagry it beholds.

    Posted on December 11, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now
  • I will admit, i am not a HUGE cradle of filth fan, nor was i ever. However since roughly 1995 ive kept my eye on COF so to speak. Every album that comes out by COF caught my attention and i always ended up listening to a few songs, but never buying an album. I didnt buy them mostly becasue they were overpriced and hard to find and becasue i just never found a reason to buy one. but ive always enjoyed their odd charm. Recently i saw “damnation…” …, so i picked it up and after 3 straight through listenings, i can say that COF is a solid band. The first thing that i noticed was dani’s banshee’esque screams, which can throw one off upon a first listen, and the excellent song structure that the band posesses. One more thing that throws me off is the opera-like choir singing that at times soungs a little cheezy. However, if you sit down uninteruppted (like in a car ride) and listen to most of the album straight through. You will be taken on a excellent and interesting musical ride. The addition of a full orchestra greatly adds to the sound and the songs which are fair in length take bounds and leaps and are not repetative, keeping the listener enthralled for the whole 77 minutes. So, if you’re into metal and are looking for a completly different experience then this album is for you, but i must warn, that this album is not for everyone nor was it written for everyone. This isn’t a song to song album, but a full concept connected album covering everything from classical pieces to blastbeats and screams of agony. So if youre not a fan take a chance and you just might find a nice treat for your ears…and if youre a fan of COF this album will meet all your demands. Enjoy.

    Posted on December 11, 2009 - Permalink - Buy Now