Dark Mirror Ov Tragedy are probably the top band in the Korean metal movement. In fact, their symphonic black, although strongly indebted to those who codified the genre (Cradle Of Filth and Dimmu Borgir), is definitely well-made, with important melodic cues and impeccable orchestral arrangements. This is where the watershed between those who appreciate these solutions in black and those who don’t digest them at all is finally determined; certainly those who belong to the first of the two categories will find more than one reason to be satisfied with this fourth full length of the Asian band. The sound is monopolized by a keyboard work of classical taste on which the scream of the vocalist Material Pneuma falls down, with the whole made more peculiar by the beautiful contribution of the violin of the guest Arthenic, but the difference between the soulless copyists and the musicians of depth, who are inspired by those who came before reworking the lesson, is all in one word: talent. This Seoul band has plenty of talent to spare, especially for their ability to create compelling melodies inserted into a fascinating sound envelope, beautifully orchestrated by the valuable touch of keyboardist Genie, who often touches unexpected heights of lyricism alternating with equally significant guitar solos. Another strong point of The Lord Ov Shadows is the variety of the solutions offered, and it’s thanks to the changes of rhythm, to the sudden melodic or acoustic openings, sometimes even of folk matrix, alternating with extreme outbursts, that Dark Mirror Ov Tragedy manage to carve out a personal stylistic figure, enough to make the proposal fresh and sometimes exciting, although it can’t be defined as innovative. Three long tracks plus two elegant atmospheric interludes (one of which features a remarkable lyrical voice) make up an album of a value that is hard to match these days in the symphonic black field, a subgenre of which Dark Mirror Ov Tragedy interpret at its best the merits and reduce to a minimum what many consider to be a flaw (the magniloquence exhibited by the Koreans can’t certainly be in the hearts of all listeners); I Am The Lord Ov Shadows, the very long final track, is a sort of apotheosis of these sounds, thanks to which the Asian band succeeds in combining the stylistic features of symphonic black with an orchestral majesty worthy of the best Rhapsody, with the no small detail of not being cloying: one more reason to approach this excellent album without any particular qualms.

2018 – Radtone Music / Dope Entertainment 2019 – Sliptrick Records