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  • Steve Jenkins

Death Dreams - Daybreak


Artist: Daybreak

Album: Death Dreams

Genre: Heavy

Review by Steve Jenkins

Daybreak from Perth manage to stand out in a genre that’s typically over-abundant with generic, cookie-cutter acts. That in itself is saying something. Yes, Death Dreams has its fair share of breakdowns, the obligatory track featuring a guest vocalist and all the other staples you’d find on any other release within this style. But, a large focus on heavily groove-infused riffs coupled with striking, sincere aggression largely contributes to what sets the band apart.

The EP opens up with serious impact and these opening notes lead straight into a breakdown where you slowly lose your involvement in the angst-cloud the band seemed to rain in on. The guest vocals from Aversions Crown beastly frontman, Mark Poida, bring an even heavier sound with gutterals and brutality that is just monstrous on the ears. Another special guest appearance comes later on in the EP during the song 'Repulse', with Jamie Hails from Polaris lending us his extremely talented vocal stylings.

The band maintains a strong forward momentum throughout all seven tracks and the aggression certainly does not let up. As mentioned before, the riffs on Death Dreams are incredibly groove-oriented. The production is clear in a way that makes the music feel thunderous on it's own accord. Rather than being reliant on the aesthetic appeal of muddiness, every instrument is crisp and distinct with catharsis. Taking the sound in this direction provides a satisfying take on the style and pays off well, giving each track a nice pulse and rhythm. The drums set a good backbone for these rhythms by utilising simplistic passages, but never stand out.

The vocals, while not especially flashy, are worth noting. Singer, Shaun Cox, implements a powerful and brutal roar that coupled with the destructive music, makes quite an impression.

A barrage of instruments does not always create heaviness, and Daybreak clearly understand this, choosing to rely on tone and production rather than the wall of sound many heavy bands try hard to incorporate effectively. Best noted on tracks such as 'The Possessor' and 'Loose Ends', these instrumentally strong offerings are appropriate and provide brief melodic respite from the chaos. The release’s fleeting length is another plus, as tracks are punchy and contained, rather than straining for the brooding edge that is becoming popular on the scene.

It may not bring anything new to the genre, but in its dedication to extremity and simplicity, it provides everything a fan of skull crushingly heavy music could ask for. If you like your music to sound pissed off, Death Dreams is an EP not to be missed, but for those otherwise seeking more intellectually stimulating music, look elsewhere, you won't like what you hear, and I don't think they care. Daybreak are pure unadulterated rage, in sonic form. Anger is the most basic form of emotion in the human spectrum, and they've nailed that on the head and then bludgeoned it into a million pieces.

7.5 out of 10 stars.

Death Dreams is out July 28th and you can order it from their Big Cartel page.