The Blessing Way is a symphonic black metal band from Galway, Ireland with some death metal and Gothic metal influence thrown into their signature sound. Eight years after their debut EP titled In the Spine of a Cloud, the Irish group returns with their first full length titled From Empty Plates We Dine which features heavy use of Gothic inspired piano work, intricate and melodic guitar riffs and on point drum patterns and transitions. The tempo changes and fluid transitions are a huge plus to this album showing that the eight year gap between their debut and this album was used to hone their skills and offer us this flawlessly epic album. Each instrument through out this album are skillfully contributing to the mesh work that becomes the artfully crafted compositions. It is hard to believe when listening to this album that Ollie Gill is the only man behind this music as he has created a project that sounds like the work of multiple skillful musicians.
The album tells of horror and Gothic tales which the atmosphere feels right out of a horror movie soundtrack. The piano work strays from being cheesy or simplistic but guides as a lead through all the right parts. The guitar riffs remain epic and forthright through each track and show that Gill is a multi-talented musician. The drums are programmed but not the lazily done way that many newer bands tend to make their downfall for a strong release. The drum programming could fool anyone into believing it is a drummer playing on the songs with how intricate and time consuming the skill put into each song sounds. The vocals are very fitting as Gill has planned exactly where to use death growls and black metal screams and spoken word. The track Claudia is a perfect example of both perfectly timed vocal execution along with skilled instrumentation. From Empty Plates We Dine is a damn near flawless release and a perfect addition to any metal fan’s collection. If you are a fan of Lord Vampyr, Black Countess, Ninnghizhidda, or just haunting Gothic influenced symphonic black metal, then this is a must own.
Overall Score: 9.5/10
Review by Neil Andersen