Drowning in Negativity

Band's List Black Metal Happy Days Drowning in Negativity
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Band Name Happy Days
Album Name Drowning in Negativity
Type Demo
Released date 24 August 2007
Music StyleBlack Metal
Members owning this album4


1. Nedslåttheten 08:39
2. Jeg er Ikke Noe.... 07:17
3. Tiggeren for nei Barmhjertighet 12:42
4. En Annen Dag... en Annen Død... 12:03
Total playing time 40:41

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Happy Days

Review @ Satanicarchangel

15 September 2012

Woah where did this come from?!

After releasing two notoriously atrocious demo's Happy Days finally releases something that actually feels like a Depressive Black Metal release rather than an appalling imitation of the genre, this release shows massive improvements in all aspects of their music and at the time this was released was easily their best work.

This demo is fairly interesting in that it is broken down into two halves drastically differing in style. The first side shows a notable depressive rock influence reminiscent of Lifelover. Although Happy Days lack the song writing and technical ability of Lifelover it's still a decent attempt at the style, just not the best. The second side shows a drastically different direction than what the first half was going for, this is a much more classic take on Depressive Black Metal and resembles a slower version of an artist like Sterbend. There is a lot of minimalism present here and although I don't have a problem with minimalism when done correctly (note the usage of correctly), it does become taxing to listen to when the songs are over 12 minutes long and there are only 2 or 3 riff changes per song. I mean I don't except the level of technicality to be on present with Brain Drill or Viraemia but I don't expect it to be on par with a band like Sunn O))), Drone Doom works fine for what it is trying to do, play sustained notes over a long period of time, Depressive Black Metal is all about the atmosphere and when you have about 2-3 riffs over 12 minutes the whole vision becomes lost and as a result of this the atmosphere doesn't become that of a trance inducing, hypnotic delivery. Although the atmosphere they try to create does actually come through in places, especially the last track the minimalism does make it a taxing listen and I frequently find my attention wavering over the duration of the release. If the songs were halved in length this would probably warrant a higher score from me but as it stands it doesn't.

I'm not full of negative things to say however, like I said earlier they have made MASSIVE improvements over all aspects of their musicianship though some areas still need a bit of work, mainly the technicality and the vocals. The mid range rasp is tolerable, even good but it's when main man Morbid lets out one of those high pitched whining wooo's that the vision of the music is lost and the delivery comes off as rather comedic. Although Morbid probably thinks he's sounding tortured and suicidal the whole effect comes off as that of a kid throwing a tantrum, not the kind of image Depressive Black Metal is supposed to emulate. If Happy Days want to be taken more seriously then I would seriously recommend eliminating that vocal delivery from their sound, the quality would no doubt be improved if they followed through with it. The musicianship has also been improved, the riffs have become more technical (barely) and there are less mistakes to be found, as such the sound is much more professional and developed. The various acoustic interludes work rather well within the music and manages to display quite a bit of emotion. Happy Days must clearly be found of them because it becomes a major defining aspect of their sound on their latter releases. The production is also much more clear, though it still is plenty muddy, the instruments come through much better than on the former releases giving the music much more room to breathe. The vocals have been pushed further back into the mix and by the sounds of it they have used a better mic as most of the crackling some of the louder screams caused have been negated. The drums however still have this weird wobble effect to them, although it is hardly noticeable for the most part it does become much more in your face in the calmer interludes and I find it highly irritating, however this is probably just a minor gripe on my part and for the majority of the time it is thankfully buried within the mix so it doesn't detract from the music too much.

This release has a much more polished and defined sounds than their previous releases and shows a definite level of maturity that was previously absent. Although there are still a few minor complaints, mainly the musicianship and the vocals this is a major improvement from their previous material. This is certainly a step in the right direction for Happy Days and I believe that if they continued to improve all aspects of their sound they could become a much more formidable force in the future and one of the more notable acts in the genre. This is certainly an enjoyable release and one that will no doubt garner frequent listens from me, this is an enjoyable release and although it's not quite as good as their latter releases especially Cause of Death: Life this release shows Happy Days fully developing and defining their sound and shows that they're a band to be taken seriously.

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