Here are the seven best death-doom albums of the last 10 years, chosen by Fires In the Distance leader and guitarist Yegor Savonin.
The band was formed in 2016 in Connecticut, and they recently released their second album, Air Not Meant For Us, a remarkable followup to the buzz worthy Echoes From Deep November debut, both released through Prosthetic Records.
Their sound leans toward what many would consider to be a more European-flavored style, big on melody and atmosphere to steer emotions atop a bedrock of burly, plodding rhythms. Lyrically, it's some pretty downer stuff as one would expect from the melodic death-doom subgenre — aching, tormented and weighed down by the dark corner of the mind. There's also a sense of yearning and mysticism, which plays well off the mournful moments that still seem to offer some hope for emotional reprieve.
Basically, it's pretty dense, but an incredibly immersive, rewarding record.
READ MORE: The 5 Best Albums to Introduce You to Funeral Doom, by Ahab's Christian Hector
Since Fires In the Distance are relative newcomers to the scene, we wanted to get Savonin's take on other standouts playing a similar style over the last decade, which you can see further down the page, beneath the video player for the band's music video for "Wisdom of the Falling Leaves."
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Fires in the Distance, "Wisdom of the Falling Leaves" (Music Video)
Marianas Rest, 'Fata Morgana' (2021)
This band has always carried a heavy, heavy connotation to the sound that I consider crushing, slow, melodic death. The song "The Weight" off of Fata Morgana encapsulates that perfectly, from the yearning guitars to the demonic vocals. It's perfection.
Exgenesis, 'Solve et Coagula' (2020)
I've been a huge fan of Jari Lindholm for many years, and I’ve always found this project in particular to be exceptional. For a writer who is so profound in melodic elements, his extension into the darker, more evil melodies and rhythms is nothing short of astonishing.
Another project of Jari Lindholm, all three of Enshine’s releases hold a special place in my heart, while not so much "doom,” the soundscapes captured across the board range from sorrowful to uplifting. The composition here is simply incredible.
Vacant Eyes, 'A Somber Preclusion of Being' (2020)
A Somber Preclusion of Being struck a special chord with me. The incorporation of three guitars allows them to build a powerful, plodding melodic presence.
Gloson, 'The Rift' (2022)
I first found this band through their video for the song "Cringe" and to say that I was fully captivated and enamored is an understatement. I've never heard a band create a core that acts like gravity as everything else disappears while listening to their songs.
Kauan, 'Ice Fleet' (2021)
This band has been a staple in my playlists for awhile and their album Ice Fleet took me by complete surprise, particularly the song, "Taistelu." I've never experienced something so glorious and enveloping in my entire life.
Kaunis Koulematon, 'Vapaus' (2017)
I discovered this band by proxy of listening to Tuomas Saukkonen's (Wolfheart, Before the Dawn, Dawn of Solace) collaborations with singer Mikko Heikkilä (Dawn of Solace). This band captures the sound of true pain like no other, especially on songs such as "Tuhottu elämä.” Masterful work.