ARÐ – Take Up My Bones

The debut album of the one-man project by Mark Deeks from England contains pagan doom metal spiced with folklore, piano, cello, clean vocals, and male choirs.

In almost three quarters of an hour, one may listen to six rather slow, gloomy compositions based on pleasantly melancholic piano melodies with a length of 6 to 9 minutes each, one of them being an instrumental track. The last couple of minutes of my personal favorite “Raise Then the Incorrupt Body” even recall the melodic world of the early years of Anathema (like a mixture of Crestfallen and Eternity), which is otherwise a huge favorite of mine in the genre.

If I had to say something negative, it would be that it’s somewhat simplistic, without even having a single solo, even though it would have been quite easy to cut into the listener’s heart either with guitars or cello – still, we don’t necessarily miss it, as the material is well done, though.

It has a characteristic atmosphere that enchants us with its sometimes mournful, sometimes uplifting, almost pathos-like melodies. It’s perfect for gloomy times.


1. Burden Foretold
2. Take Up My Bones
3. Raise then the Incorrupt Body
4. Boughs of Trees 
5. Banner of the Saint
6. Only Three Shall Know

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