Edge Of Existence
May 1, 2021
It was almost two years ago that the married couple Dahs surprised me with their debut EP “Forging The Cataclysm“. Under the name pun Kings Winter, the two started a side project and were quite convincing with their classic heavy metal. The mostly positive feedback on this EP prompted the two to compose new song material and record it in their home studio. These eight new songs can now be heard on the band’s first album “Edge Of Existence”. And there is one change compared to the EP. On the majority of the songs Marco Vanga (Greydown Fields) sits behind the battery. Otherwise, everything stayed the same. Jule Dahls sings and husband Tobias plays all the string instruments and the keyboards.
The spoken words in the intro “Living Systems” are a quote from “Jurassic Park” by Micheal Crichton, spoken by Justyn “JC” Roberts, a friend of the band:
Living systems are never in equilibrium. They are inherently unstable. They may seem stable, but they’re not. Everything is moving and changing. In a sense, everything is on the edge of collapse.”
This also served as inspiration for the title and song lyrics. The title track “Edge Of Existence” is the first regular song on the album. Powerful guitars and booming double bass provide a fat sound right from the start. Singer Jule Dahs has to fight against it, which she succeeds in doing. Her expressive voice is the decisive icing on the cake. And the growls also seem to spring from deep in her throat. That husband Tobias is an excellent guitarist can be heard on the guitar solos. In “Kingdom Of The Blind” the guitars stomp down everything that gets in their way. Only the singer is the rock here as well. Instead, “The Next In Line” is a partly soulful, partly punchy power ballad. Jule manages to let a certain fragility flow into her powerful singing. A good bass line and great guitar solos make this song my favourite. Quite unusually, “The Human Dynasty” starts with e-piano sounds before the rhythm section kicks in here too. And as this midtempo rocker started, so it ends, with the piano. Nomen est Omen. On “Ghosts In This Machine” you can hear the whirring of the machine’s ghost at the beginning. But then the drums pound here too, and there are powerful riffs to be heard. The piano and melodic, partly acoustic guitars provide some relaxation in the middle section. “Crusaders Of Today” is a modern power metal banger. Reminds me a little of Doro. In “Dangerous Ascendancy” Tobias elicits insane sounds from his metal axe. A rhythmic midtempo stomper. Bass and drums are booming, while Tobias once again plays a huge guitar solo. Another highlight for me. The bouncer “Discard The Ashes” starts with keyboards, but is later riff-driven with a high tempo.
Conclusion after several listens – absolutely awesome. This is modern power/heavy metal on a high level. It’s hard to believe that the album was produced by the band themselves. And that Kings Winter are not (yet) a real band. With “Edge Of Existence” the standards for other metal bands are set very high. And I would like to apologise to singer Jule here. I had compared her with Doro. But she is the more perfect singer, sings excellently, while the metal queen screams more often.
KINGS WINTER – Edge Of Existence (Official Studio Video): https://youtu.be/gEwKDKRIrXs
Jule Dahs – Vocals
Tobias Dahs – Guitars, Bass, Keyboards, Backing Vocals
Marco Vanga – Drums
- Living Systems (Intro)
- Edge Of Existence
- Kingdom Of The Blind
- The Next In Line
- The Human Dynasty
- Ghosts In This Machine
- Crusaders Of Today
- Dangerous Ascendancy
- Discard The Ashhes