November 15, 2014

Sadness - Close & Fading Days Away...

Written by Aaron Sullivan.

Metal has many genres under it’s big umbrella. Of all of those sub-genre’s Depressive Suicidal Black Metal may be the most niche. A sub-genre usually defined by low-fi production and wailed banshee like vocals. And like many DSBM bands Sadness is a solo project. Unlike any, as far as I am aware, is a solo female. Now the proliferation of females in metal is nothing new, but in this genre, I believe it's a first. And hopefully not the last.

What really sets Sadness apart from other DSBM bands is the way she juxtaposes the music with the vocals. The music is more post-rock oriented, at times even upbeat. But the vocals are what bring the depressive atmosphere along with song titles like, "Useless", "Lonely", and "Something Hurts". The buzzy guitar sound usually found in this genre is instead replaced by a cleaner more shimmering style. The vocals are unlike any that I have heard before. Yes they are the tortured banshee wails DSBM is known for. But the way they sound, almost as if they are cried and screamed at the same time make for a very unique sound. The fact that they are being delivered by a woman may have something to do with that. Either way, I find them to be one of the things I enjoy the most.

Sadness has released two albums this year, and though only separated by two month there is some growth between them. The second album, Fading Days Away… is not as low-fi and have a different thicker atmosphere. Songs are fuller, and that’s a good thing. If Close was the feeling of a dark haze, then Fading Days Away… is like being surrounded by a dense fog.

DSBM is a pretty simple no frills style of music for the most part. Heavy on mood, light on virtuosity. But it is a style that I’m drawn to like bees to honey. To be able to evoke that kind of emotion from a listener without a bunch of bells and whistles is what I like about the genre the most. Sadness’ albums do just that. There is no real big thing going on. Slowly strummed/picked guitars with tortured vocals over the top. But when you hear the songs you realize they don't need anything else to convey the emotions Sadness is trying to get across.

[Go to the post to view the Bandcamp player]

[Go to the post to view the Bandcamp player]