Genre: Doom Metal (early), Progressive Metal (later)
"Everybody was very impressed," Opeth's singer Mikael Akerfeldt describes the scenario in his band's tour bus. He just was presented "Swanlike," the second output of DARK SUNS from Leipzig, and played the record in the bus. He continues, "I think this music is very professional, tight, and dark … and the sound is great. You are certainly deserving a record contract."
And indeed: When "Swanlike" was released back in 2002 - first as a self-production, then via Voice of Life - nobody could quite believe that this band from Leipzig was founded as recently as 1997. It is, however, not only the versatile playing of their instruments that is so convincing, but first and foremost the power with which they are able to convey their feelings.
The following concerts have given a deep insight into their musical agenda. There is no room for gimmicks or antics on stage; there is just this hugely expressive music that, according to reviewers, is akin to Katatonia and especially Opeth. The only thing that counts for the band is a beautiful song. Alternating between raucous and clear vocals, harsh Death Metal elements and dreamlike Progressive Rock moments, "Swanlike" doesn't sit comfortably in any pigeonhole. No genre tells DARK SUNS where their limits are.
Limits are not what their musical ability is about. Hence, they turned to a very ambitious concept for their third album, "Existence" that will be released at 21st February 2005. "Existence' is a journey of 75 minutes," the band explains. "A journey through the dreamy emotional worlds of a brittle existence, trying to escape traumatic conditions during the various stages of a process of self-discovery. A musical maze full of intensity …"
The musical movements are synchronised to the emotional vibrations of the human being at the centre of "Existence." Starting off with hopeful and almost optimistic childhood scenes, despair increases with age, until - as DARK SUNS' singer and drummer Niko Knappe said in a recent interview - the protagonist "perishes from within at the end. We want to express that on the album. The sound should include the broadest possible range of emotions - from thoughts of self hurt to spontaneous outbursts."
The musical fix stars thus have changed: the fury of Death Metal has become a thing of the past; the new DARK SUNS are more akin to bands such as Anathema or Porcupine Tree.
- Swanlike (2002)
- Existence (2005)
- Grave Human Genuine (2008)
- Orange (2011)
- Everchild (2016)
- Below Dark Illusion (1998)
- Suffering the Psychopathic Results of Daily Blasphemy (1999)
Niko Knappe - Vocals, Drums (1997-present)
Maik Knappe - Guitars (1998-present)
Torsten "Torte" Wenzel - Guitars (2003-present)
Jacob Müller - Bass (2007-present)
Ekkehard Meister - Piano (2008-present)
Carsten Tardi - Bass
Tobias Gommlich - Guitars (1997-2003)
Oliver Fricke - Bass (1998-1999)
Hannes Schnelle - Didgeridoo (1998)
Matthias Benzke - Keyboards (1998-1999)
Volkmar Claasen - Violin (1998)
Michael Beck - Bass (1999-2001)
Thomas Bremer - Keyboards (1999-2008)
Christoph "Fingergroove" Bormann - Bass (2001-2007)
Dominique "Gaga" Ehlert - Drums
Evgeny Ring - Saxophone
Govinda Abbott - Trumpet