I must admit I was curious about this Danish band, mainly because I like their band name (no they are not some sort of bastardised Diamond Head in case you’re thinking that) plus the description of their music hooked me in and what a fine decision that turned out to be on my part. With two albums, a split and an EP already out in their relatively short six to seven year tenure I can boldly state that Demon Head offer you, the listener, something different to feast your auditory sense organs on. There is a charm about their music that is mellifluous on hearing which I centralise around the awesome production they have afforded the release in their own studio. The album was recorded over some time I believe and that time has paid dividends with an album packed with extravagant musicianship, beautifully constructed songs and sublime arrangements.
The eerie, haunting intro, “Rumours” hints at a desolation to come but nothing could be further from the truth as that austereness breaks into “The Night Is Yours” where the tempo is upbeat and a 70s like rock riff comes in followed by a fret burning lead break. A standout of this album are the vocals, the guys tone has a rich, warmness that embeds fluidly into every song, as his tonal delivery has hints of a gothic nature but with soaring notes. The songs upbeat framework is facet wholly embraced by the album in most places as “A Flaming Sea” follows with its pulsing bass line pumping into the song. I’d even say there’s a slight indie rock touch to the song mainly due to the vocal style but the cool vibe that permeates the song is totally addictive.
“In The Hour Of The Wolf” is an epic journey of sumptuous musicality, the toxic riff imprints into your head as the harmony guitar work envelops the entire tune in a shroud of bountiful sonic lusciousness. The descent into the calm piece is wonderfully poised and it is this aspect the band does so well, everything is well placed and has purpose to draw you in. Another epic “Strange Eggs” begins with a doom like structure, the riff possessing a bleakness before the transition into a percussive loaded phase where the drums interlace with the guitar work effortlessly. The shift in tone increases in drama, you can feel the tension escalating with each passing second as the band weave their majestic melodies throughout all set against those superb vocals I’ve already mentioned.
The acoustic ornaments that adorn the start of “Death’s Solitude” are dulcetly applied alongside the emotive vocal before the drums punch through with elongated fills. The song is moody, in a dreamy like sense, not solemn or melancholic though some of you may interpret it as such and therein lies the beauty of this album, it is open to interpretation as it closes with another magnificent track “Mercury & Sulphur”. That moody aura continues, and dips into a more poignant backdrop as an isolated guitar riff is heard with the vocals taking centre focus. The abrupt insertion of the rest of the instrumentation is boldly applied yet that morose beginning can be heard within still as the guy sings his heart out here, with heart wrenching passion. The morphing into a denser more rugged doom like phase is fluidly exercised and continues to slow in gradations spiralling ever downwards towards a bristling harmonious lead. That slow pace makes you pay attention, it is hypnotic and transfixing as the song again shifts into a softer section that leads it into its finale which is breathtakingly mesmerising, especially the solo leaving you in no doubt that this album is truly a masterful piece of sonic art.
(9/10 Martin Harris)