Review: “Dark Water” by Juliet Ruin

Formed from the ashes of Fiction of Fate in 2015, Juliet Ruin took the stage name that frontwoman Jess Ruin had planned to use as her own as a kind of alter ego to help create stage presence. The remaining members of the line up, Kent Geislinger (guitars and backing vocals), Wesley Rands (guitars), Cody Reid (bass and backing vocals) and Jesse Bauman (drums) heard the name and decided it would be ideal for the band and the rest as they say, is history. We first heard them four years later when “Old Stardust, Love and Chaos” surfaced, a debut album which saw them testing the waters with seven string guitars and more technicality than their debut EP offered; that in turn opened many doors for the Canadians as they were able to share stages with Jinjer, Sumo Cyco and Wednesday 13 to name but a few as a result.

This time around guitarist Diego Fernandez of Eye of Horus co-produced, mixed and mastered “Dark Waters” with the band while lending a hand and dropping a guitar solo on the title track. A stomp-y. headbangable affair, the first thing that grabs you is the improvement in the harsh vocals of Jess Ruin, who now sounds like Butcher Babies pairing Heidi Shepard and Carla Harvey in one single entity, such is her impressive prowess. Sonically, the band offer moody groove with a healthy dose of melody in swirling dark moods, catchy enough to sing-a-long to, raging enough to start a mosh pit, all the time banging your head. Maintaining the energy “Cosmic Vertigo” is just as powerful and dark with Jess Ruin sounding like beauty staring at beast in the mirror in a sing and scream off that is impressive to say the least. The lead licks are a fine embellishment to the bands sound and they have certainly worked on their craft, having a more well rounded sound and sanding off some of the rougher edges, despite the last album impressing with its own merits. The vocal change up, a kind of spoken word rap in “Fake Stigmata” that centers the song is one that grows on you with each repeated listen, the big grooves of the riff counter balancing them perfectly. It may seem unnecessary to some but it adds a sinister edge that isn’t necessary portrayed elsewhere and the result is a powerful one as those living lies are cut down by the harsh vocals like a manchette through Jungle vegetation. A slower, brooding, fist clenched anthem, “Might” is a tale of arming ones self in preparation for War. A couple of glorious melodic drop offs into mournful riffs before building back up are well executed and well crafted and if you don’t find yourself singing a long to “Align. Fight. The luck of a bastard; all of my might” then you should really go and see a Doctor [8.5/10]

Track listing

  1. Dark Water (ft. Diego Fernandez of Eye of Horus)
  2. Cosmic Vertigo
  3. Fake Stigmata
  4. Might

Dark Water” by Juliet Ruin is out 26th March and should be available over at bandcamp.

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