Both the band and the album were a lucky discovery. ‘Sovran‘ is Draconian’s sixth album and the prospective listener will find it filed under “Goth-Doom Metal”. However, metal genres have become a very complicated and, in a way, personal thing for quite some time now. Therefore, the listener is kindly asked to disregard confining labelling.

A brief look into the band’s history now. Draconian are from Sweden and the main members are together since 1994. ‘Sovran‘ introduces Heike Langhans, the new female singer. The album consists of 9 tracks, plus a bonus one, and lasts for about an hour. The first 20 -26 minutes come as no surprise to those who know the genre well. However, that doesn’t make it necessarily boring. It is as atmospheric, slow and deep as it should be. The music and the alternating vocals are not extravagant; they flow harmonically.  The female vocals are not too operatic and the male backing vocals not too forced. Another good point is that the listener can distinguish all instruments playing; none is overly emphasized and the acoustic result is pleasant. The main themes of their songs are death, darkness, pain, sorrow and love.
Despite the fact that those who listen to ‘Sovran‘ may initially dive gently into the goth-doom atmosphere, the opening dynamic riffs of ‘No lonelier star‘, suddenly shift the listener’s mood. The sound makes a journey from passive to aggressive paths, maintaining its original form. Actually, Draconian succeed to perform in a calmly dynamic way- this is goth-doom metal. This element in their music varies from one album to another depending on the context each time. The album closes in this kind of atmosphere which does feel as closure.
In a nutshell, this is a very decent album from Draconian who haven’t made another same ol’ same ol’ goth-doom album. Although not innovative, it is neither boring nor a bad reproduction of the original forms of the genre.

Mary Kalaitzidou