Archive for Elliot Vernon

Interview: Gareth Murdock and Elliot Vernon [Feb 2012]

Posted in Interview with tags , , , , , on 26th February 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Valkyrian Music’s fifth favourite Scot Alasdair sits down with his two of his favourite pirates, Gareth Murdock and Elliot Vernon for a very length chat.

Sleepless Swans – My Life Lived In Reverse [2010]

Posted in Review with tags , , , , on 14th January 2012 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Band: Sleepless Swans
Album: My Life Lived In Reverse EP
Release year: 2010
Genre: Blackened Doom Metal/Yorkshire Metal

Sleepless Swans is the blackened doom project of Elliot Vernon [Windrider, Ravenage]. The debut release “My Life Lived In Reverse” was released back in 2010 and is available for free download via the band’s Facebook page.

The EP begins with the soberly named “The Light Will Blind Us All”. The song takes on a very doom metalesque sound with a good use of cold, sobering vocals – Much like that of Swallow The Sun. The solid use of slow, haunting and melodic riffs help create a dark mood through the music while the use of clean vocals sound like the droning of some of the vocal work on a My Dying Bride release (A good thing, I assure you of that). “Birdsong” picks up the tempo a bit but keeps true to the solemn sound echoing throughout the EP. While the guitars seem more full of life due to the tempo, they still blast out a certain sadness, mixing well with Elliot’s vocal work.

The EP takes a turn down a darker forest of musical goodness that is “Veiled In Black And White”. The guitars ring out a tune of dismay and desolation whilst the vocals belt out blackened torment adding to the brooding sound of both the EP and the song. The EP comes to a grim and daunting end with “The Blue Hour”, a song that shows a lot of doom metal influence in the bass and drum work as well as the guitars. One thing I noticed with this last song was the feeling of emptiness it can cause to the listener along with the lack of vocal work. I’ve never been a fan of instrumentals but “The Blue Door” is definitely a masterpiece. The varying riffs just seem to merge together like goldshlager and jagermeister to make a sweet mixture – Only in this case, a sweet musical mixture.

I’ll be honest, I’ve never been one for doom metal – except for the occasional listen to Paradise Lost or My Dying Bride – but “My Life Lived In Reverse” has surprised me and it’s definitely one worth getting. The guitar riffs seem like they reach into the soul and pluck one’s darkest emotions and fears. Hopefully, we’ll all be hearing more from Sleepless Swans in the future – and maybe even see them play a few shows as well.


Nico Davidson

Cryptic Age w/Support @ Stereo [Live Review]

Posted in Live with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , on 16th July 2011 by Nico Solheim-Davidson, the North Sea Poet

Bands: Cryptic Age, Lost Effect, Windrider
Location: Stereo, York
Date: 15th July 2011

The night was certainly a most anticipated event as it was Cryptic Age’s first gig as the headlining band. Originally four bands were booked for the night but one of them had dropped out. The doors were due to open at 7:30pm though didn’t open until nearer 8pm – Though this didn’t deter those who had already arrived for a night of metal.

Critically acclaimed folk metal quartet Windrider were the first to perform. Their usual guitarist, Lee, was absent due to injury so Windrider’s bassist Hallam filled in on guitar whilst Cryptic Age’s bassist Tom filled in as bassist for the night. At the beginning of Windrider’s set, the crowd was somewhat small though they soon filled in after the first song “In The Hall Of The Slain”. Despite playing a small stage, the band were extremely active receiving a great reaction from the crowd, especially with the performances of “A Warrior’s Tale” [The title track of the recent Windrider EP of the same name] and “Slaughter From The Shadows”. It was certainly an impressive performance.

The second band of the night were Lost Effect who describe themselves as “melodic metal”. Their set was certainly most interesting as they mixed brutalising riffs with melodic sections topped off with the clean, operatic-like vocals of the front woman and violent grunts and growls of their keyboardist. Lost Effect had a superb stage presence and clearly wowed the crowd with songs such as “Whispers” and “We Are The Damned”. The only down side to their set was that it didn’t seem long enough.

The headliners, as stated above, were York based power-folk quartet Cryptic Age. Their set began with a metal version of the theme song from “Game Of Thrones”. The vocals were strong, as is to be expected. Cryptic Age interacted brilliantly with the audience in between songs. Some of the highlights of their set include “Homeland”, “Paragons Of War”  and “On The Cold Bare Ground” [all of which can be heard on Cryptic Age’s debut EP “Homeland”]. Their performance of “Bring Down The Sky” was mystifying, almost haunting. Cryptic Age also played some new songs including “Aftermath” and “Maelstrom”. “Aftermath” sounded like a combination of Iron Maiden and Ensiferum due to the very melodic guitar riffs while “Maelstrom” had a very tribal sounding chorus, especially when the crowd sang along.

All in all, the night was certainly an energetic, metal fuelled night with immense performances from three bands. Keep an eye out for these bands as they could soon be on Scuzz or playing at Bloodstock.

Nico Davidson