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Into the Lair of the Sun God

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Album Review

If Dawnbringer's recent career were to be analyzed simply based on the color palette used on their album covers, one might deduce that these staunch heavy metal purists were traversing their "sepia phase," whatever that means, as they released their fifth studio album, 2012's In the Lair of the Sun God. Alas, it's nowhere near that simple trying to explain how an album steeped in so many vintage metallic hallmarks as old as the hills can possibly sound so fresh and exciting, but here goes. This is a concept album comprised of nine Roman-numeral-designated song titles that together spin a fantastical yarn about an ancient warrior wracked with feelings of inadequacy (where's a wizard shrink when you need one?) who decides to secure his legend by murdering the sun itself. Sounds reasonable enough, right? Well, in what amounts to the first of three unstated but musically distinct acts, our would-be hero sets out on his quest bestride a galloping flurry of dazzling guitar work written and recorded to duplicate the sound of an old Iron Maiden demo (all too fitting for a tale of hubris topping even "Flight of Icarus"). Parts "I" and "III," in particular, are quite literally phenomenal (eat your heart out, Steve Harris), even surpassing anything found on Dawnbringer's prior critically acclaimed LP, Nucleus; yet a major curveball awaits on act two. For you see, songs "V" and "VI" are essentially ballads, and though their haunting lyrics may portray the Crypt Keeper's twisted concept of romance, the music itself is evocative not of Maiden or Priest, but Bon Jovi or Skid Row! This curious musical detour can do nothing to waylay our nameless warrior's harrowing mission, however, just delay it with the dread-filled, dramatic, deliberate cadence of doom embodied by the album's third and final act, whereupon song "IX" finally finds him fulfilling his destiny with an unexpected plot twist that will not be spoiled here. Suffice to say that In the Lair of the Sun God delivers from start to finish, and can't even be marred by Dawnbringer main man Chris Black's strained singing, which falls somewhere between Lemmy, Slough Feg's Mike Scalzi, and frequent collaborator Blake Judd of Nachtmystium, but fits right in with his band's lo-fi aesthetic. Amazing what great imagination can do with great music, no matter how endlessly it has been plundered in the past.

Customer Reviews

Real heavy metal!

Absolutely fantastic album, even better than Nucleus (which is saying a lot!). Btw, if you buy the physical copy, you get the actual song titles. For anyone that actually cares, here they are: 1.Perfect Water 2.Silence in Waves 3.Quiet as a Grave 4.Enter Darkness 5.Take a Deep Breath 6.My Destiny is Death 7.And So It Is Done 8.I am the One 9.To Murder the Sun.

This is a great album

It is rare these days that I find a rock/metal band that inspires me. Every week another technically proficient yet formuliac extreme death metal or metalcore album is being released to cater to the current impatient angst ridden teen. It seems as though the current metal scene has forgotten its roots and has chosen to put a stronger emphasis on screaming, growling, breakdowns and light speed arrpegiated souless soloing rather than actual songwriting. In my opinion, metal and rock music in general is in a pretty bad place right now.

Well if you are like me and crave a band that pays homage to the great metal bands of yesteryear but are still innovative in their songwriting then look no further because Dawnbringer is one of those bands. Dawnbringer's music is extremely diverse, they are constantly melding stoner rock, NWOBHM and thrash flawlessly. This album is packed with great riffs,amazing maiden like harmonized solos and most importantly solid intelligent songwriting.

Keep in mind that this is a concept album and really should be listened to as such. If you listen to this album from front to back just one time I assure you that you will get your moneys worth. This album is going to be on repeat in my car for quite some time. A must buy!


It was their album"Nucleus" that drew me in,and it's this album that captures me,can't stop listening.I'm a fan of all types of Metal,but new "traditional" bands seem always to miss the mark. These guys do it right, never too flashy with the production,they play homage to many of the greats yet always leave room for experimentation. The only song I have any problems with is V,a power ballad?The lyrics and the song it's self don't seem to fit. That's o.k because there are 8 other tunes to enjoy,over and over again!!!


Formed: 1995 in Malvern, PA

Genre: Metal

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Though based in Chicago since the year 2000, Dawnbringer was originally founded five years earlier in Malvern, PA by vocalist and multi-instrumentalist Chris Black, a heavy metal purist par excellence, who has saved his interests in other musical styles and metallic offshoots for a number of side projects including Pharaoh, High Spirits, Superchrist, and, most notably, renowned American black metallers Nachtmystium. No such aesthetic distractions are to be found in Dawnbringer's oeuvre, however,...
Full Bio
Into the Lair of the Sun God, Dawnbringer
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  • $8.91
  • Genres: Metal, Music, Rock
  • Released: May 29, 2012

Customer Ratings