The first day of last summer saw the light one of the best albums of 2011 ("the Sorrowful Sun"), the first day of Spring 2012 "Tome of the Future Ancients" saw the light and there's no risk in predicting a great position in many faves list of the year to that 3rd album from the KINGS of gloomy psyche DOOM !!!
Being so intensively creative and productive, the first day of each season could now be a Day-off to celebrate the delightful sonic invocations of Ron and his buddies, far more exciting than just a climate affair...
While the 2nd album already shown a more personnal approach, leaving the main influence of Electric Wizard for something gloomier and more psyche, ICE DRAGON push here things far more further to reach by (numerous) moments pure excellence.
As suggested wisely my friend Wes Cueto in his review of "the Visage of Astaroth", ICE DRAGON is the kind of band to listen in various states, at various frequencies and I would add in various situations/places too... that's what I did several times daily over the past 10 days : in my car with my (seduced) oldest son, , stoned under my shower, loud with headphones near the sea or while running at dawn with my dog in the woods, low in the dark, half drunk/half stoned, totally clean at breakfast and even completely stoned while doing things of life with my wife... !!!! and thanx guys it made me always feel so fucking good, so fucking high ! just like you were certainly when writing/recording all those 12 pieces of misery...
Vania posted recently on FB a question like "why do people need drugs, when there's music?"; to that, a guy answered something like "because with drugs music is even better", concerning "Tome of the Future Ancients" this is just the exact truth.
ICE DRAGON fear nothing, experiment with weird DIY elements, express its most inner and primal feelings in a unique gloomy way... ICE DRAGON breathes life in its truest entirety: sometimes beautiful and refined, often raw, authentic and decadent... Always dark in its form, like the world we'll leave to our descendents.
Where "the sorrowful sun" was letting place to some quiet accoustic parts, "Tome of ...." is far more obscure and heady, that doesn't prevent of psychedelic spacey moments but the guys have released here their most crushing songs ever with "Manuscript 408", "NATIAIWS", "Illuminations Foretold", "Astronomical Union" or "the Bearded Mage", and believe me I already enjoyed so much previous anthemic songs like "Poseidon's Grasp", "Mistress Death" or "Flowers".
The interpretation is enriched craftily like said before but also with more refined instruments like mellotron or sitar (the beautiful intro of "the Bearded Mage"). The psychedelic edge is also developped even if not always obvious considering the extremely hauting and dark atmosphere reigning supremely, it's more palpable and spacey in songs like "Man sitting in a Fields of Green Grass" or "Steal away from hell".
If they generally sound the same, like a young Ozzy, Ron 's vocals have noticeably changed in a few songs, being more menacing , even kind of martial and/or possessed like in "Night" where it seems he did come back from Katmandu via Tchernobyl , what a an apocalyptic mood in here ! and this song paradoxically includes the most beautiful solo ever composed by the band... divine !
ICE DRAGON never played songs including 10 riffs each, never intended to have a clean sound which wouldn't fit at all but just denature their charm and that's still not the case here, but they have never been so original, and if they can be demonstrative that 's rather in mesmerizing catchiness.
I know we're just at its beginning (even if 12 years represents yet almost a generation) but in my opinion this 3rd album is so far the trippiest DOOM affair of the century and it'll certainly proove a timeless caracter that already allowes to affirm that we've got here a CULT release, HAIL the DRAGON \m/