BravePicks 2018 – AT THE GATES' To Drink From The Night Itself #3
December 29, 2018, 6 months ago
Another gruelling year of heavy metal debauchery is almost over! Killing is our business ... and business is good! And this year the metal scene killed it with a myriad of heavy intrigue! So the votes are in and the compiling is complete! It's time to crown the winners and call out the the disappointments.
So who will be our #1? You’ll find out as we count down the BravePick Of 2018 each day in December! And our devout scribes killed it as well, putting their collective metal minds together to build the ultimate lists including individual Top 20s (new studio albums ONLY), Top 5 Brave Embarrassments (a fan favorite!), Top 3 Concerts, What/Who Needs To Stop In 2018? and Metal Predictions For 2019. All will be showcased come the New Year!
'Tis the season to commence the good, bad and ugly of 2018! On with the cream of this year's crop!
3) AT THE GATES – To Drink From The Night Itself (Century Media)
And from the cup of darkness comes forward comes the Gothenburg melodic death metal masters At The Gates with To Drink From The Night Itself! Since their huge comeback with 2014’s At War With Reality, the Swedes return with this new opus of masterful playing and 12 songs that shows trademark melodeath sounds that only Tomas Lindberg and the boys can create! A bit of a spiritual successor to the lauded Slaughter Of The Soul, the melodic chops remain intact with crushing rhythm guitars, blood-curdling vocals, and outstanding musicianship. Cheers to the night and take a sip of the darkness that flows from the album that takes its place at the #3 spot.
As BW scribe Ryan Owenson penned in his review, “Luckily for us then, To Drink From The Night Itself is an immediate record that draws you in quickly through the title track and ‘A Stare Bound In Stone’. And, what’s noticeable here, even initially, is how much more genuine this album is when compared to At War With Reality. At War With Reality impressed almost universally when it was released and contains some great material, but having revisited the album recently after not having to listened to it for a long while, I was struck by how At War With Reality feels very, very aware of its legacy and the massive weight of expectations on its shoulders. This was Slaughter Of The Soul’s follow-up, and At War With Reality wasn’t about to forget that fact. Or, maybe, it couldn’t forget.
“But To Drink From The Night Itself doesn’t feel like it has the responsibility of grand legacy. In fact, it seems like an album that’s content to be itself, and wasn’t written with expectation in mind (we don’t know this for certain of course, and only the members of At The Gates could confirm or deny). So while To Drink From The Night Itself doesn’t have the sheen of At War With Reality, it’s got the grit and the scars that prove its resilience, especially on ‘Seas Of Starvation’, one of the album's highlights. ‘The Chasm’ also reflects the same, to impressive effect. As well, To Drink From The Night Itself has the listenability to make sure the new tracks will fit in well live, as evidenced by ‘Palace Of Lepers’ and ‘A Labyrinth Of Tombs’.
BravePicks 2018 Top 30
3) AT THE GATES - To Drink From The Night Itself (Century Media)
4) STRIKER - Play To Win (Record Breaking)
5) GHOST - Prequelle (Loma Vista)
6) CORROSION OF CONFORMITY - No Cross No Crown (Nuclear Blast)
7) VOIVOD - The Wake (Century Media)
8) WARREL DANE - Shadow Work (Century Media)
9) SLASH FEATURING MYLES KENNEDY AND THE CONSPIRATORS - Living The Dream (Snakepit / Roadrunner)
10) SLEEP - The Sciences (Third Man)
11) BULLET - Dust To Gold (Steamhammer / SPV)
12) DEAFHEAVEN - Ordinary Corrupt Human Love (Anti-)
13) RIVERS OF NIHIL - Where Owls Know My Name (Metal Blade)
14) IMMORTAL - Northern Chaos Gods (Nuclear Blast)
15) BLOODBATH - The Arrow Of Satan Is Drawn (Peaceville)
16) AMORPHIS - Queen Of Time (Nuclear Blast)
17) BLACK LABEL SOCIETY – Grimmest Hits (eOne)
18) IHSAHN – Ámr (Candlelight / Spinefarm)
19) THE DEAD DAISIES - Burn It Down (Spitfire / SPV)
20) MELIAH RAGE - Idol Hands (Metal On Metal)
21) ALICE IN CHAINS - Rainier Fog (BMG)
22) HIGH ON FIRE - Electric Messiah (eOne)
23) MAMMOTH GRINDER - Cosmic Crypt (Relapse)
24) ICARUS WITCH - Goodbye Cruel World (Cleopatra)
25) UNLEASHED - The Hunt For White Christ (Napalm)
26) SATAN - Cruel Magic (Metal Blade)
27) GRAHAM BONNET BAND - Meanwhile, Back In The Garage (Frontiers)
28) MONSTROSITY – The Passage Of Existence (Metal Blade)
29) GRUESOME – Twisted Prayers (Relapse)
30) DIMMU BORGIR - Eonian (Nuclear Blast)