ALL FOR THE KING: Darkest Before Dawn

All For the King have returned with their 2nd album for Roxx Records and 3rd release overall. Darkest Before the Dawn is the title of their recently released opus and it is a powerhouse of memorable melodies and crushing riffs. Is that enough hype for you?

 Well if not read on, and be aware this album is a love letter to those who want “Christian Lyrics in their Christian Rock.”

In regards to my previous comment so much is made of music made by Christians that is explicit in their lyrical direction. As if every part of the musical body should be the same with exactly the same mission and purpose. Didn’t the Apostle Paul speak of this already? I think he did.  Well in the case of All For the King their lyrics point to the one true and Living God, make no mistake about that.

And not only do they do that blatantly they do it with power and boldness. It doesn’t turn into a syrupy mess which sometimes happens and perhaps I’m being to harsh on others (wouldn’t be the first time for me!). Yet the melodies created with the riffs delivered here are so strong

                ‘ Our salvation is due to our God, who is seated on the throne

                And to the Lamb that conquered the evil and rose from the dead’

                                                                – The Seventh Seal

                ‘Today we the light fading into night

                What once was truth is just a choice for one to make

                Our minds are occupied by lazy game of choice

                The church now rise and sound alarmed with one voice

                                STAY AWAKE!  Stay Awake!’

Those are just two examples albeit small. However usually when I hear ‘powerful’ lyrics it appears that damnation is also in the next line, however that is not the case here. Why focus on the punishment when the risen Christ is more glorious and invigorating to sing about? All For the King have delivered a full on lyrical treasure.  Feeling down? And desire that jolt of heavy worship? Check this out.

So if you are not familiar with their sound what do All For the King sound like? Perhaps described as European traditional metal. Scott Waters over at No Life ‘till Metal has described them on this release as ‘Tony Martin era Black Sabbath.’ Thick sludgy riffy that just hits with force and power.

Erik Tilling produces such tasty guitar riffs its sure to satisfy the pickiest metal head. Ricard Hulteke brings such a fantastic vocal performance I can’t help but be a fan boy. My favorite track “You Are My King” is a delight. SO memorable that melody digs in and I can’t help but demand to hear it again and again. I LOVE THIS SONG!!!

                ‘Welcome – to the Prince of Peace!’

                Welcome – home my child !

                Welcome – the Crown of Life!

                Welcome HOME!!’

                                – Welcome

The rhythm section of Andreas Alov (bass guitar) and drummer Anders Kollerfors deliver such a stinging bottom end of the mix, heavy! Locked and loaded. There are keys throughout the album delivered by Johannes Hager which are placed subtly in the mix, and they add power.  David Levinsson also adds piano and strings on the albums loan ballad ‘Surrender.’

This album is a satisfying package of retro influenced heavy metal with a modern sheen. Without a doubt it will made my top ten for 2024. I keep coming back to this release again and again. Heavy and memorable with amazing lyrical content, it fits the context and structure so well.

Any fan of traditional heavy metal worth their salt should be grabbing this album and spreading the word.  The European flavor is strong and will not disappoint. One of the must buy albums of 2024 period.

Roxx Records

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