This is a project featuring multi-instrumentalist James Ashbey (Deceptor, ex-Solstice, Craven Idol and Doctor Death) and singer Thumri Paavana. Described as a cross between Doom, Epic Metal and NWOBHM, the thought is quite tempting. Immediately you are dragged into epic metal territory with ‘Idylls of the King’. This track has momentum and encompasses the three sub-genre description mentioned earlier. The female vocals are a nice touch, but I’ve found over time with this release there’s very much a similar presentation. Not enough light and shade for myself. When musical passages delve into the darker side of the spectrum, the atmosphere remains positive with this vocal style, perhaps the way it’s meant to be, for me its loses potential of its sinister undercurrents.
Production wise, this is really strong, handled on classic equipment by Jamie Elton (ex-Amulet and Doctor Death) and mastered by Jamie Gomez (Angel Witch), both have captured to emotional interpretation of the Lethean duo’s music. The doomier ‘Seafarer’ takes you on its journey with a subtle sense of submission whilst another epic in the form of ‘Time and the Gods’ is another slab of genius talent. I must stress though, it’s a personal preference, but I am really not in favour of the vocal style as indicated earlier.
This is music of tremendous vision from this UK duo, however, my passion is wavered by the vocal part as mentioned a couple of times earlier. Look beneath the surface and the arrangements are quite spectacular, the production is strong and the vision clear to hear. This is a unique project and a unique release for many reasons. The feeling being forlorn and introspective is brightened by the presence of often angelic lyrical interpretation; you just have to make up your own mind as to which emotion you care to take with you on this journey through ‘The Waters of Death’.
(7/10 Paul Maddison)