Shadowpath – Rumours Of A Coming Dawn Album Review

Shadowpath – Rumours Of A Coming Dawn

Album Review By Rainer Kerber

The Swiss band Shadowpath has a long and varied history. Keyboarder Philiip Bohny and guitarist Benjamin Zumbühl founded the rock band Spellbound in 2005. Because of arty differences, however, it came to a split a few months later. In the same year, Phil ventured a new start under the name Wishpond, with new bandmates. One year later it was renamed Shadowpath. This name has been retained until today. However, as stable the lineup was not. The current band members, except for the singer, have been there for more than ten years. A permanent bassist, the band does not seem to have currently. After two demos in 2007 and 2012, the band released two years ago “Rumors Of A Coming Dawn” on their own. After that, band founder Phil took a one-year break. In 2018 the band reunited with Simone Christinat (Leganda Aurea, ex-Elis) as new singer. The band was able to land a label deal with Slipstrick Records. First, the debut album is released again. Simone told me in advance that the band is currently working on an EP and later a full album is planned. But let us listen first of all into the 2017er debut at this time.

Thunderstorms, raindrops, piano, that’s how the intro “Prelude To Agony” starts. Stop, this is not a superfluous intro, as it has unfortunately become a habit on many Metal albums. It’s a short song that serves as a prelude. According to Wikipedia, a prelude is “an instrumental piece with an opening or leading character.” Okay so 100 percent instrumental it is not, but the voice Giselle is used like an instrument. And the listener is actually tuned in here for the next 50 minutes. One of the best intros I’ve heard in the past few years. In “Chaos Equation” the Swiss start right away. They show their sense for beautiful melodies, which were powerfully recorded. Somewhat getting used to the sometimes very high vocals, although clean sung but somewhat shrill sounding. Although, the singer also feels at home in lower tone ranges. Band founder Philipp Bohny provides the Deat Metal list with his growls. Powerful riffs alternate with filigree guitar solos. “Seed Of Hope” temporarily provides calm ballad sounds. But then again proposing to the full force of the rhythm section. “The Impossible Chain” is a twelve-minute epic. Prog Death, is there such a thing? If not, you would have to name this genre as such. Hammond organ sounds, e-piano, guitar riffs, growls in a constant alternation of melodies and rhythms. “Deny Me” starts balladesk first, but later picks up speed. Musically the song is a bit out of the ordinary. The catchy rock tunes are almost airplay ready. Here Shadowpath show how versatile they are. The final song “Beta” is another epic song with excess length. Just over nine minutes are presented here great metal anthems but also always poaching in the death area.

“Rumors Of A Coming Dawn” is compositionally and musically an outstanding debut album. The Swiss show is very varied with the used stylistic devices. Thus, Shadowpath cannot be pigeonholed. Unfortunately, I had to make a small point deduction. The high vocal passages by Gisselle Rousseau are sometimes marginally useful for me. For songs like “Deny Me” or “Seed Of Hope” she shows that she can do it better too. Another highlight of the album for me is the intro “Prelude To Agony”. On the announced EP or the new album, you can be quite curious.

Shadowpath – Chaos Equation:



Philipp Bohny – Keyboards, Growls, Backing Vocals
Simone Christinat – Lead Vocals
Samuel Baumann – Drums
Stefano Riario – Guitars

Album (Encyclopaedia Metallum)

Philipp Bohny – Keyboards, Vocals (backing)
Gisselle Rousseau – Vocals
Samuel Baumann – Drums
Stefano Riario – Guitars

Label: Sliptrick Records

Out: July 9th, 2019

Playing time: 52:06

Track list:

  • Prelude To Agony
  • Chaos Equation
  • Seed Of Hope
  • The Impossible Chain
  • Another Inquisitor
  • Deny Me
  • For A Final Ultimatum
  • Beta

Rating : 8/10

MHF Magazine/Rainer Kerber