Dark Sermon Are Communicating In Tongues
In December of last year I was afforded the opportunity to attend one of the coolest metal festivals on the planet, Barge To Hell. It was an epic extreme metal cruise around the Bahamas for a whole week. There were 42 bands onboard, ranging from genre heavyweights like At The Gates, Sepultura, Behemoth, Mayhem, Napalm Death etc. and then there were lesser known, but still great bands like Kampfar, Lock Up and Rotting Christ, to name just a few. And then there was Dark Sermon.
A late addition to the cruise these young, fresh faced guys had slipped onto the line-up at the last minute due to an incredibly successful signing to eOne Records for their impending debut album. I ended up getting to know the guys before I heard their music, spending a lot of the cruise hanging out with the boys in both Dark Sermon and fellow Floridian band, Abiotic and they were all really affable, passionate young musicians. I was previously familiar with Abiotic’s brand of fierce technical deathcore, but I’d never heard of Dark Sermon before, so I was particularly curious to hear how they would sound.
Sadly, they were relegated to the a 5am set in the comedy club venue on the boat (complete with shitty sound), something that would have deterred a lesser band. Even though these guys were young make no mistake they were professional and still focused on pouring their hearts into the music. Lesser musicians would have performed half heartedly or not at all. I sat there, with about 20 other people and watched my new, young friends stand on the stage, poised to perform. They looked nervous, and a little awkward, which I attributed to their age and lack of experience. For a moment, I honestly braced myself for the worst, fearing my new friends may not be one of the stronger bands on the cruise.
Boy was I wrong. Dark Sermon blew my (and everyone else’s) expectations out of the water, as suddenly the trepidation that was visible on their faces before they began was swiftly replaced with genuine rage and intensity as they burst into life. The clattering dissonance of their music (and the terrible sound system) propelled everyone forward, and soon, despite the fact that it was well past the time to party, the room slowly started to fill out with people – who despite being severely racked with tiredness; were jolted out of their alcohol induced/sleep deprived comas and began, pulsating with their rhythmically addicting music. Dark Sermon are like a fresh, young and extremely aggressive take on The Black Dahlia Murder and Job For A Cowboy – constantly compelling rhythms and thundering low end combined with a delicate touch of ambience and the versatility of vocalist Jonny Crowder, create a compelling and unique mix that penetrates your very skin. It should be said that Crowder is an extremely dramatic and commanding stage presence – his body language projects every venomous word with all the malice and fury that one could conjure. This level of passion exudes from all the members of the band and it makes watching them a very engaging and memorable experience.
Their debut album, In Tongues is due out in April and luckily we have a couple of songs that we can share with you right now. Below you will find a music video for the title track of the album as well as a competently produced lyric video for the song “Imperfect Contrition“.
The video for “In Tongues” is mostly focused on their performance as a band and the dynamic nature of frontman Jonny Crowder. For those of you unable to see them live this is a brief glimpse into the level of musicianship, emotion and intensity they bring to all of their shows.
Dark Sermon are currently blazing their way through the states on tour at the moment, be sure to head out and catch them if you can, these guys have the potential to be one of the sleeper hits of 2013 so be sure to give them your support!
In Tongues is due out on April 12th via Nuclear Blast Records in Europe and eOne/Goodfight in North America. Wicked.