ARÐ – Take Up My Bones
May 17, 2022, a month ago
Take Up My Bones is the debut full-length from Winterfylleth keyboardist Mark Deeks. Under the name of Arð, the album is a concept of what appears to be a passion project from Deeks with topic focusing on the relics of Northumbrian Saint Cuthbert, who lived in the 600s.
The music is trudging doom metal, but with a spiritual tone and backdrop, especially on the soft, hymnal-like “Raise Then The Incorrupt Body”. Deeks is joined by Wolcensmen’s Dan Capp on guitars, Atavist drummer Callum Cox, and cellist Jo Quail. Take Up My Bones has this contrasting trait of sadness and melancholy, but also being uplifting, spiritual, and transcending to a different plane. The lyrics aren’t a joyous sermon on religion, but the fascinating events of Saint Cuthbert and how his remains finally reached their final resting place and the music reflects the trials and tribulations of that journey.
Choirs and chants are present which offer a glowing overhead to the depressive guitars and oppressive drumming. The vocals are warm, clear while taking an imposing, low tone on the heavier sections of tracks. Deeks constructs wondrous melodies than churn sorrow and it weighs heavy on the listening experience. With an album of this construct and magnitude; it helps that Arð keeps it tight at six tracks and 43 minutes. Piano-led instrumental “Boughs Of Trees” is a beautiful, contemplative piece of music that builds up with the increasing use of violins and a wailing guitar part in the background and crescendos when the drums comes in. It’s a track that encapsulates the talent and passion in constructing the compositions for Take Up My Bones. The guitars live up to expectations as well – the main guitar part and melody in closer “Only Three Shall Know” could fit right on a My Dying Bride cut.
A captivating album, Take Up My Bones is unique with its theming and a top-notch piece of doom metal; give it a look!