I had watched the snow all day.
It never lets up.
All day falling.
I lifted my voice and wept out loud,
"So this is life?"
—My Dying Bride, "The Snow in My Hand"
My Dying Bride is a Doom Metal
band from England, formed in 1990. Initially playing what was essentially Death Metal
with longer-than-average songs
, interspersed with slow, melodic passages featuring keyboard and violin, the band gradually progressed more towards Gothic Metal
and Doom Metal
, dropping the death metal vocals entirely for several albums before returning to a heavier sound around the turn of the century. They are considered a Trope Maker
for both Gothic Metal
and Death/Doom, along with Anathema
and Paradise Lost
, the three bands being known together as the "Peaceville Three" after their record label.
- Aaron Stainthorpe, vocals
- Andrew Craighan, guitars
- Hamish Glencross, guitars
- Lena Abé, bass
- Shaun Macgowan, keyboards/violin
- Dan Mullins, drums
- Towards the Sinister (Demo, 1990)
- Symphonaire Infernus et Spera Empyrium (EP, 1991)
- God is Alone (Single, 1991)
- The Thrash of Naked Limbs (EP, 1992)
- As the Flower Withers (Full-length, 1992)
- Unreleased Bitterness (Single, 1993) - a previously unreleased alternate take of their song "The Bitterness and the Bereavement"
- Turn Loose the Swans (Full-length, 1993) - one of the Trope Codifiers of Death/Doom and often considered their Magnum Opus
- The Sexuality of Bereavement (Single, 1994)
- I Am the Bloody Earth (EP, 1994)
- The Stories (Box set, 1994) - limited edition box containing all three EP releases
- The Angel and the Dark River (Full-length, 1995) - first album without death vocals; nearly all Death Metal elements are stripped away. Considered a masterpiece of Goth Metal.
- Trinity (Compilation, 1995) - all three EP releases on one CD
- Like Gods of the Sun (Full-length, 1996) - reintroduces faster musical sections, but death vocals are still gone; Aaron's personal favorite MDB album
- For Darkest Eyes (Video, 1997) - includes a live performance and the band's early music videos; re-released on DVD in 2002 with additional live footage
- 34.788%...Complete (Full-length, 1998) - the band's New Sound Album, with heavy trip-hop influences and lots of Wangsty lyrics, bringing with it an enormously Broken Base; reaction has generally become more positive over time and a couple of songs are still regularly played live
- The Light at the End of the World (Full-length, 1999) - a return to the band's Gothic Metal sound; harsh vocals are back again, but opinions ranged from mostly positive to It's the Same, Now It Sucks
- Meisterwerk 1 (Compilation, 2000)
- Meisterwerk 2 (Compilation, 2001)
- The Dreadful Hours (Full-length, 2001) - much better-received than The Light, managing to win back most of the band's older fanbase
- The Voice of the Wretched (Live album, 2002)
- Songs of Darkness, Words of Light (Full-length, 2004)
- Anti-Diluvian Chronicles (Box set, 2005) - three-disc box containing songs from across the band's entire career, including live tracks and three new remixes; includes an extensive interview with Aaron Stainthorpe
- Sinamorata (DVD, 2005) - features a live show and music videos, including two fan-made videos
- Deeper Down (Single, 2006) - includes an edit of the title track, an unreleased song, and a live track
- A Line of Deathless Kings (Full-length, 2006)
- An Ode to Woe (Live CD/DVD, 2008) - the DVD has one extra song not present on the CD
- For Lies I Sire (Full-length, 2009) - first album with violin since Like Gods of the Sun; death vocals are absent except for a couple of songs
- Bring Me Victory (EP, 2010) - contains the title track, two Cover Versions, and a live track
- The Barghest O'Whitby (EP, 2011) - consists of a single self-titled 20-plus minute long song
- Evinta (Full-length, 2011) - an album created using a mixture of old and new riffs and themes, played on classical music instruments instead of the band's usual Heavy Metal instrumentation
- A Map of All Our Failures (Full-length, 2012) - another album in the vein of For Lies I Sire, with violins and very few harsh vocals
- The Manuscript (EP, 2013) - an EP of new songs mostly recorded at the same time as the previous album, with a more pronounced Death Metal influence
My Dying Bride provide examples of:
- Abusive Parents: "The Dreadful Hours" is about a child who is beaten by his father and dies.
- The Aloner: The protagonist of "The Light at the End of the World."
- Altum Videtur: The lyrics of "Sear Me" (which are both grammatically incorrect and horribly mispronounced). Some other songs to a lesser extent, e.g. "Vast Choirs".
- Cluster F-Bomb: "Heroin Chic", full stop. Averted on most other songs.
- Cover Version: "Some Velvet Morning" by Lee Hazelwood, "Roads" by Portishead, traditional English folk song "Scarborough Fair", "Failure" by Swans.
- Epic Rocking: Many songs are upwards of six, seven, or even ten minutes. The emphasis is generally on the "Epic" rather than the "Rocking" though.
- Harsh Vocals
- Intercourse with You: "For You", "The Whore, the Cook and the Mother".
- Keep Circulating the Tapes: Most of the band's rare recordings are readily available on reissues or compilation albums, but the original versions of "God is Alone" and "De Sade Soliloquay" have not appeared anywhere except the God is Alone vinyl EP, now long out of print.
- Kiss of the Vampire: "A Kiss to Remember".
- The Lost Lenore: Frequently.
- Mohs Scale of Rock and Metal Hardness: Mostly 8-9, with some (mostly early) songs hitting 10. 34.788%...Complete takes it down a couple of notches. Completely non-metal songs like "Sear Me MCMXCIII", "Black God", and "For My Fallen Angel" are a 1 (though being non-metal, one could argue that it's pointless putting them on the scale at all).
- Mood Whiplash: "The Whore, the Cook and the Mother" seems to be a loving Intercourse with You song until Aaron's loving statements are followed by indications that he's only staying with the woman until he finds something better.
- Obligatory Bondage Song: "Your Shameful Heaven".
- Our Vampires Are Different: "The Blue Lotus", "Santuario Di Sangue".
- Precision F-Strike: A couple on "The Whore, the Cook and the Mother".
- Purple Prose: So much. So. Much.
- Spoken Word In Music: "Sear Me MCMXCIII", "Black God", "For My Fallen Angel", and to a lesser extent in several other songs.
- Title Drop: The lyrics for "The Return of the Beautiful" from As the Flower Withers (and its remake, "The Return to the Beautiful" from The Dreadful Hours) include the phrase "My Dying Bride".
- Troubled Fetal Position: Aaron is sometimes known to assume this position when performing live.