Hailing from Northamptonshire, The Darkhorse‘s debut album strings together influences of black metal, doom and sludge varieties. The album The Carcass of the Sun Will Sleep consists mostly of new material, alongside two songs being overhauled from their prior catalogue.
Launching into Dying Is The Only Cure, the band are out to prove how heavy they can go. Distorted, chugging guitars break into surprisingly intricate riffs as gutteral vocals stamp over the instrumentals. Lyrically the song doesn’t shine particularly, but it’s a fact which is lost among the euphoria of a downbeat and heavy cacophony.
741 introduces itself with an indulgent blast-beat, and it’s a song which requires a strong drumming backbone. The guitar work here if relatively simple but effective. Once again the prime line of the song, “Welcome to the catacombs” is repeated continually. Towards the climax of the song an extended drum fill proves the instrumental prowess of the band.
March of the Infected is one of the songs drawn from the band’s discography, but it feels right at home here. With an extended intro, it’s one of the more paced songs on the album, which is a nice change. Hecatomb is one of the heaviest songs the band have to offer, tossing out ripping screams relentlessly. Hecatomb is a whirlwind of force promising to become a favourite among fans.
Reaching the second half of the album, a pattern has started to form. The Carcass of the Sun Will Sleep is powered by sludge-inherited guitar, with the combined force of drum and vocal patterns to move the song along. nemA does little to change this; it’s a simple yet effective formula allowing the band to streamline their heavy brand of doom.
Dead Crows is another song brought back from the band’s past, and it’s easy to see why. The screams take on a higher pitch here, offering some contrast to the standard gutteral growls. We Fear None But Our Own exposes some of The Darkhorse‘s hardcore elements. With a punchy beat, it’s a slight departure from the black metal roots of the album, offering up some slam beats. It’s the most dynamic song of the album, breaking down to an impressive guitar solo.
The album closes on Congratulations You’ve Survived The Human Cull. The tempo drops for this song as the band put on the brakes to revel in their glorifyingly heavy formula. Reaching an appropriate climax of ringing riffs and intense drum beat, it’s a good way to put the album to bed.
The Carcass of the Sun Will Sleep is an intense concoction mixed primarily of black metal and doom with just enough flexibility to keep the album interesting. It’s the instrumentation of this band which holds their charm, as the lyrical content is far from inspiring. Regardless, The Darkhorse have provided a solid album which will fuel many intense live shows.