(Cruz Del Sur Music)
Originally formed in Sweden around ’88, we have a heavily melodic mixture of doom and heavy metal in the form of Quicksand Dream. Their last record Aelin released nearly two decades ago, marking this their first stab at new music in quite a while. Thankfully, the Swedes know how to do it right and if you’re a fan of Manilla Road, Black Sabbath, Solstice, Cirith Ungol and many others in that vein; you’re going to find something here. It is bit Sabbath, definitely – but there’s a hint of power metal melody within the vocal excursions that take this act far into another dimension. Yet still, not one completely removed from it’s base element. The record still remains deeply rooted in what makes the genre so timeless, and it still retains that raw quality that we’d expect for this kind of performance. Obviously, the melodies here are it’s biggest selling point as Patrick Backlund’s work is nothing short of amazing. When this man plays a solo, you remember it. You want to hear it again and often. Folks, you just don’t hear anything like this anymore, which to me sells the record just in that sense. This is heftily reinforced in the acoustic introduction to “The Shadow That Bleeds” which even reminds me a little bit of Ritchie Blackmore just in the playing alone. That to me is a great feeling, as I’ve always loved Deep Purple and Rainbow, especially. I feel any record that can give me that level of quality is worthy of being heralded.
Vocalist Göran Jacobsen has a number of highs and lows throughout the album, and in some places he really smashes it through the roof. I won’t say that his performance here was ever bad, but it wasn’t consistently as spectacular as Backlund’s uncanny guitar work. I just have to say it again, this stuff is absolutely mesmerizing in the fact that I thought I was going to have to pick my jaw back up off the floor, because it had fallen so heavily to the ground. I really can’t say as to why it took a band like this so long to get noticed, especially during the eighties where you would have expected them to really soar with the legends by which I’ve named in this review. But it is definitely better late than never and hopefully Beheading Tyrants isn’t the last record we’ll hear from these gentlemen. At least with not quite so long a break in between. People were born and have died within the waiting period for this one, which is exactly the same amount of time it takes for a child to mature into a bratty adolescent. I’m quite sure that many of the bratty adolescents out there might want to throw the “dad rock” term on this one as well, but it is just as well that I am the sort of “dadish” type figure this type of rock might attract, and I have a good feeling that there will be many more in my category that will find it quite intriguing too. These brats can keep all of their little boy and girl groups with guitars, while the rest of us will have the wondrous melodies of such an act like Quicksand Dream to listen to before we die. Or before the band does, whichever happens to come first. Let’s just hope that we get a few more albums out of them before that time comes. Guys, we’d have loved you back in the eighties, but you’re still pretty awesome today.