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  • Noah Spiece

‘An Ocean of Sound’: A Review of ‘A Wake in Sacred Waves’ by Dreadnought

Layers. This is the key to “A Wake in Sacred Waves”. Both clean and harsh vocals trade places between speeding guitars that fall into slowly picked melodies and atmospherics. The bass, soft and heavy, pulsing and driving, constantly pushes forward. In between saxophone, flute and mandolin rise to the surface. The drumming ranges from intense blast beats to jazzy technicality and groove. And the keys, both piano and synthesizer, add touching accents, melodies, and continue to increase the breadth of Dreadnought’s musicality. All of these are strung together into a potent ocean of sound swirling about and swallowing up the listener on Dreadnought’s epically subtle work.

To give room for the variety of noise Dreadnought lay into their album, they create a deep and thorough progression through lengthy tracks, giving voice to each of their differing facets. From all the instrumentation mentioned above, sounds from genres such as black metal, progressive metal, rock, jazz, and even doom poke their heads above the surface as recognizable influences. To encapsulate these sounds, “A Wake in Sacred Waves” holds four tracks, each of which does not dip below the 10-minute mark, and together play for a total run-time of 51 minutes. This ocean of sound is an expansive one as you drift slowly towards the far-off horizon of each track.

Progression is Dreadnought’s tool to capturing their myriad of layers and turning them into quality compositions. They drift from differing rhythms, melodies, tempos, and even styles a number of times in each song. One moment piercing screams from vocalist Kelly Schilling ride atop blast beats and crushing guitars; the next, Schilling and fellow clean vocalist Lauren Vieria soothe and soften with their beautiful, natural voices. Both these clean and harsh vocals sing amidst the varying musical background, from eclectic and chaotic drumming and guitar work, to atmospheric passages, piano driven sections, and slowly building amalgamations of all these sounds. And although each track is dense with this diversity in sound and are ever evolving into new noise, every twist and turn breathes life into and further completes each song.

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