Long before I was into Metal music I fell in love with books. My favorite genre I read more than any other is science fiction/fantasy. I remember clearly as a kid hanging out at the city library and discovering J.R.R. Tolkien‘s “The Hobbit” and “Lord of the Rings” for the first time. Here was a story that had everything I liked to daydream about as a boy. Wizards, dragons, scary creatures and it is one of the greatest stories ever told. When I discovered my love for Rock and Roll/Heavy Metal I also discovered some of my favorite bands wrote and played songs based on Tolkien‘s work. Bands such as Black Sabbath, Rush and Led Zeppelin. But if you want to listen to a band whose discography is all about Tolkien then Summoning takes the cake.
Summoning is a Tolkien black metal band from Austria. “Old Mornings Dawn” is the band’s seventh studio album. Summoning last album was 2006’s “Blood Oath.” The band consists of two men. Protector who plays guitar and drum programming and Silenius who plays bass. Both men share in the keyboard and vocal duties.
The first thing that hit me after listening to this album from start to finish was how epic it sounded. The vocals and lyrics really make you feel like you are living in a Middle Earth inspired adventure. From elven whisperings on the song ‘Evernight,’ to letting your imagination believe you are climbing up one of the mightiest peaks in the Misty Mountains on the song ‘Caradhras.’ There are also multiple songs that tell the legend of Erendil the Mariner and his becoming a star.
Every track on “Old Mornings Dawn” is beautifully crafted. The highlight for me was the keyboards. Layers on layers of what you would think a Tolkien world should sound like if it were black metal. From the synthesized flutes, horns and violins, to the Great Eagle like cries and the trumpet like blows,you will find there is so much to absorb. With all the praise I’ve been giving the keyboards the guitar is not lost in the Summoning sound. They are mesmerizing in such songs as ‘The White Tower’ and ‘Caradhras.’ The drum programming has a great rhythmic pace throughout the album. I could not help myself after listening to the drum introduction on the song ‘Of Pale White Morns and Darkened Elves’ of imaging a fierce battle between Elves and Orcs about to begin.
So in closing, I as a Tolkien fan enjoyed “Old Mornings Dawn” very much. The next time I read one of Tolkien‘s books or watch one of the Peter Jackson movies I will make sure to put my headphones on, turn on this album and get transported away to Middle Earth. I’ve read that Summoning is set to go into hibernation again soon. I just hope it will not be for another seven years.