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Duskmourn – Fallen Kings And Rusted Crowns

duskmourn – fallen kings and rusted crowns


Duskmourn are a Melodic Death/Black Metal group who hail from New Jersey and Pennsylvania and ‘Fallen Kings and Rusted Crowns’ is their third full length album. Headed as a 2 piece by Walter Deyo who handles bass, guitar, and vocal duties and Bill Sharpe who handles drums, guitars, and keys, they have been active since 2012 with a string of rather consistent, successful albums. Starting out as more a melo death group similar to the likes of Omnium Gatherum or Insomnium, since then (and especially with this album) they’ve expanded more towards Melodic Black Metal/Folk territory. The core sound of ‘Fallen…’ is a mix of Amorphis meets Omnium Gatherum (minus clean vocals) but it still features a few fresh moments that were subdued on their earlier works but now feel fully fleshed out. Fans who know of this band will know what to expect (and be pleased by the results) and new fans will not find this album a great starting point to get into Duskmourn. A bit more ‘blackened’ than their debut back in 2012, but not so much that it feels like they’ve completely gone off the rails.

Expect grandiose, sweeping melodies when hearing this album, but still heavy tones and pretty clean production for a mix of Melo Death/Doom/Black Metal that touches anywhere from Eluviete to Daylight Dies. Those who like the darker Melodeath tracks will find the opening title track plenty of Omnium Gatherum/Insomnium inspired with the clean wintery tones, roared vocals, and backing keyboards that thankfully don’t dominate everything about the song. The folksy elements come into play here and there with some Finntroll cliches, but overall the track feels more Amorphis meets Insomnium from the 2000s. The drums are thick but not repetitive, but slightly buried by the riffs and vocals. Then there are the more Blackened Folk pieces such as ‘The Harbinger’ with the violin/keyboards taking more a prominent role and the track has more of that ‘Viking Metal’ flair to it vs. the Daylight Dies depressing tones. Those looking for an excellent head banging track that is sure to be a staple at shows will enjoy the thumping anthemic riffs of ‘Mountain Heart’ which feature some of the better ‘hit making’ power of a group like Dark Tranquillity minus the heavy use of progressive electronics. One thing Duskmourn does well is let the Melodeath elements of the guitars and vocals do most of the work, heralding back to the genre’s more stripped down days of the early 2000s and don’t quite give into the more modern touches of the most recent Amorphis or Soilwork album. It isn’t quite At the Gates raw but more like a heavier version of late 90s In Flames.

Overall, fans who enjoy Melodic Death Metal or blackened melodic metal with touches of folk will find this album a hit. Everything about it track after track is consistent, which can be good or bad. Like a good Cannibal Corpse album, ‘Fallen Kings and Rusted Crowns’ sticks to its formula without much deviation from what Duskmourn have been doing since their last effort back in 2017, and hopefully they never will. These 2 have found their niche in their sound and haven’t really disappointed in the last seven years they’ve been cranking out albums. Those looking for an introspective album that touches on the nature themes like Fall of Rauros or Panopticon but thunders with the aggression of Amon Amarth with subdued icy touches of Insomnium will find just what they need in Duskmourn. ‘Fallen Kings and Rusted Crowns’ is a predictable release, but in a good way.


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