Monday 27 November 2023

Mars Red Sky - Dawn Of The Dusk (Album Review)

Release Date: 08th December 2023. Record Label: MRS Red Sound / Vicious Circle. Formats: CD/DD/Vinyl

Dawn Of The Dusk - Tracklisting

1. Break Even

2. Maps of Inferno

3. The Final Round

4. A Choir of Ghosts

5. Carnival Man

6. Trap Door

7. Slow Attack

8. Heavenly Bodies


Julien Pras: vocals, guitar

Jimmy Kinast: bass

Matgaz: drums


Psych/Stoner Rock visionaries Mars Red Sky return with their new album Dawn Of The Dusk and sees the band breakdown their music into a more conceptual style of Art Rock with elements of their trademark Psych, Doom, Space and Stoner based sounds being added of that classic style of MRS based heaviness. Mars Red Sky even taps into creative influences such as Russian Circles and David Bowie for this release.

Dawn Of The Dusk may not be your standard MRS album and may actually confuse their established fanbase at first. However, there’s a magical style of Psychedelic Doom being played throughout the whole album. The Post-Rock leaning atmospherics of the later stages of the album does have moments of heavy tripped out Cosmic/Space Rock flavours with Julian’s sweet-natured vocals being the main conduit for the band to establish that emotional rapport and connection with the listener as what happened with all MRS releases.

The opening two tracks of the album Break Even and Maps Of Inferno sees Mars Red Sky sticking to their tried and tested winning formula with heavy fuzz rock sounds and melodic strands of Cosmic Doom which allows the listener to fully come on board with the albums main artistic message and vision. Multi-layered effects and fuzzy guitars combine for a dramatic and more gloomier sound. Julian’s vocals become slightly fractured and operatic within Maps Of Inferno which starts to show small instances of the creative left-turn MRS will take next.

Third song The Final Round sees bassist Jimmy Kinast take over vocal duties and offer a more cerebral 1980’s Alt-Rock vision and delivers a stunning vocal rendition inspired by David Bowie in places. The song flirts between Post-Punk and Gothic melodies with a more twisted and nuanced style of Doom/Stoner Rock that can be quite romantic in places even with the more AMPLIFIER WORSHIP driven guitars.

Fourth song A Choir Of Ghosts allows MRS to return to the Post Apocalyptic style of Fuzzed Up Cosmic Doom with Post-Metal flourishes appearing between the cracks of the Sludge/Stoner Rock jams that remain some of the heaviest on the whole album. This is purely an instrumental song which allows MRS to revisit heavy progressive sounds not heard since their earlier albums.

Fifth song Carnival Man is classic MRS through and through. The instrumental moments convey a deep mysterious sense of Post-Rock/Post-Metal heaviness with slow-paced Fuzz leaning Doom/Stoner grooves. Julien is back performing vocal duties and this is MRS doing what they do best. Highly confident Cosmic/Space/Fuzz Rock sounds with that Stoner Rock swagger that allows Mars Red Sky to play their delicate, heavy and aggressive style of delicious sounding music. The song retains a sense of Post-Rock urgency within the mellower and slow-paced moments of the track.

The final three tracks of the album Trap Door, Slow Attack and Heavenly Bodies opens the world of Mars Red Sky to a more bombastic and progressive style with lush orchestral and instrumental moments being quite ethereal in places especially on tracks such as Slow Attack and Heavenly Bodies.

The final track Heavenly Bodies sees the welcome return of Queen Of The Damned (Helen Ferguson) who both collaborated previously earlier this year on their acclaimed EP.  This song is a brave and bold choice to close the album with. As it’s a semi-acoustic track with Helen’s soothing vocals and folk-rock instrumental moments. So don’t go expecting an all out HEAVY STONER ROCK track, as this allows the album to end naturally and peacefully.

Dawn Of The Dusk shows a different side to the band but one that is still a highly original album that allowws Mars Red Sky to still be considered as one of the most inventive bands within the Psychedelic Doom/Cosmic/Stoner Rock scenes. With first class production values throughout, Dawn Of The Dusk is another AOTY contender from Mars Red Sky. 

Words by Steve Howe 

Thanks to Shake Promotion PR for the promo.

Dawn Of The Dusk will be available to buy on CD/DD/Vinyl via MRS Red Sound and Vicious Circle from Friday December 08th 2023.


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