REVIEW: TOMORROW’S RAIN – “Hollow”
Tomorrow’s Rain’s debut record kicks off with the one-two 6/8 punch of “Trees” and “Fear. These tracks serve as good indicators of what follows—ambient, almost pastoral doom that crawls along at a measured pace. “Punch” is probably too harsh a description as ‘Hollow’ largely side-steps blunt force trauma altogether in favor of the dull ache of gothic beauty and existential dread.
“Trees” eases us into the record via a gentle bass groove offset by prominent acoustic guitars, pseudo-cocktail piano, and spoken word vocals. A restrained exercise in progressive folk metal, the band threatens to take flight as vocalist Yishai Sweartz’s death growl takes center stage for the choruses, but the band quickly pulls back. Layered guitars thick with reverb and subtle strings ride the death waltz of the bridge before an epic guitar solo leads the way to the monolithic doom of the outro.
“Fear” finds sublime depth in its gentle acoustic passages and lumbering riffs. This track and the record owe a tremendous debt to the band’s doomy British forefathers, and it comes as a ringing endorsement when My Dying Bride’s Aaron Stainthorpe unmistakable grief-stricken croon enters the fray.
“In the Corner of a Dead End Street”, a much heavier prospect, begins a string of mid-record highlights. Its initial keyboard-heavy, mood-setting atmospherics are eventually peeled back to make room for an ultra-catchy ascending/descending riff driven by the concise mid-tempo drum work of Nir Nakaz. This star-studded epic not only manages to make room for vocal turns by Orphaned Land’s Kobi Farthi and Rotting Christ’s Sakis Tolis, but its half-time wind down also boasts a bombastic solo by Paradise Lost’s Greg Mackintosh.
“Misery Rain” builds on the heavier premise set by “In the Corner of a Dead End Street”. Guitarists Raffael Mor and Yoni Biton expertly build and release tension by alternating between painted soundscapes and crushing aggression. This is underscored by Nakaz and bassist Yaggel Cohen’s effortless alternation between time signatures and Shiraz Weiss’ prominent and crucial layers of lush, moody, and melodic keyboards.
“Into the Mouth of Madness” mirrors the violent and tumultuous world and cerebral horror depicted in John Carpenter’s Stephen King referencing movie of the same name. Syncopated start/stop riffing is dampened by the angular guitars and gentle crooning of the whispered verses before the unhinged aggression of the lead break finds shred master Jeff Loomis (Arch Enemy/Nevermore) delving deep into the sonic maelstrom. The last quarter of the tune competently balances blast-beat addled riffs, horror music soundscapes, and jaw dropping solos.
‘Hollow’ drifts off into the night via “The Weeping Song”, a plodding, straightforward affair that finds the narrators pleading to the Gods for forgiveness. Offsetting delicate and ethereal vocals by Lisa Cuthbert (The Sisters of Mercy) with Sweartz old-school snarl, the song looks for redemption in the mournful and repetitive mantra of the title-referencing chorus.
On ‘Hollow’, Israeli doom-metal band Tomorrow’s Rain delivers a solid, star-studded record that favors atmosphere and execution over originality.