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Album Reviews of "Skydancer" and "Of Chaos and Eternal Night" by Swedish Melodic Death Metal Band Dark Tranquillity

Updated on September 9, 2023
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Ara is a journalism graduate from California State University, Northridge, who is always looking to explore his writing opportunities.


The Focus of This Dark Tranquillity Article In 2022 and Beyond

Back in February 2016, readers got a brief review of the album Skydancer by Swedish melodic death metal band Dark Tranquillity but now the focus will be on their 1995 mini album called Of Chaos and Eternal Night as well as the Skydancer album. Note: that article is no longer in existence but you are going to get a very detailed review and analysis of an album that set the foundation for the band's early years. This was re-released along with Skydancer but readers might ask how good this mini album is? Before we address that, I have now decided to take a look at Skydancer as it has been over 25 years since this band’s debut album was released.

Since we are now in 2023, how has this album fared all these years? It still sounds melodic, fresh and in some ways brilliant too even though the voice of Anders is not as polished on this album as it would be starting in around 2002 or so. This time period (1993 and earlier) was a time in which there were so many ideas as the metal genre was changing. Dark Tranquillity was formed in 1989 but they are perhaps the founders of the Gothenburg style of melodic death metal. Skydancer isn't your traditional style of death metal but for the time that it was written it is a darn good album from one of the greatest Swedish artists of any musical genre!

This photo symbolizes not only the album title of Skydancer but it also shows that a true fan of the melodic death metal genre will love the album.
This photo symbolizes not only the album title of Skydancer but it also shows that a true fan of the melodic death metal genre will love the album. | Source

"Skydancer" The Review

Nightfall By the Shore of Time starts that Dark Tranquillity journey into musical excellence as the four elements fire, Earth, water, and wind are mentioned but the lyrics are complicated to interpret at times. Away, Delight, Away is a complex lyrical song about infinity being eternal in that it never dies. When our minds are still young, we can absorb all there is to know about this vast and infinite Universe which we are all a part of and the band knew this concept very well. There is so much that can be said about Sweden’s Dark Tranquillity that we could talk about so many aspects of their music and career. They have set a standard of excellence in the melodic death metal genre that is tough to match. Soilwork is not as good either though they deserve credit as well. A Bolt of Blazing Gold starts with beautiful yet intricate acoustic guitars. The album’s cover is appropriate showing the sky opening up into the heavens as the sky is so vast it seems like that can go on forever.It also may imply that there is unlimited potential for the free flow of musical ideas and Dark Tranquillity is certainly skilled in being able to experiment musically and create a solid album pretty much every time! Crimson Winds has this sort of refreshing lead guitar part.

We cannot forget the beautiful beginning of the song called Through Ebony Archways which to this day is still my favorite song in the Skydancer album. The song builds up into this almost ballad song as Mikael Stanne does the clean vocal part in this song as there is a reference to a silent man in the tower. This song and Shadow Duet are the two most memorable moments in which there are clean vocal parts and back in 1993 when this album was first released, such an approach musically would have been unheard of for any melodic death metal ban but in these two instances, those clean parts fit in well particularly in song #6.

"Shadow Duet"

Anders Friden the Former Vocalist for Dark Tranquillity That Sings On the Skydancer Album

Anders Friden used to sing for Dark Tranquillity until he left and was replaced by Mikael Stanne.
Anders Friden used to sing for Dark Tranquillity until he left and was replaced by Mikael Stanne. | Source

About the Mini Album "Of Chaos And Eternal Night"

Of Chaos and Eternal Night starts with the title track and this one right away is vintage Dark Tranquillity which features the drumming style, melodic riffs and the usual growling vocals of Mikael Stanne who takes over the vocal duties from Anders Friden. The title track lyrically is about a tale told by someone that likes to explore extremes. The darkness is not a threat to this man’s existence as he admires the crows that take over as night falls upon the Earth. Even though I was going to do a separate review on just this mini-album, it is probably better now to include this along with Skydancer as what readers now see is a good double album by one of Sweden’s finest melodic death metal bands.

"Through Ebony Archways"

This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2019 Ara Vahanian


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