Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Dool & The Shape Of Fluidity

Everything flows, nothing ever stays the same. This was the notion of the ancient Greek philosopher Heraclitus and it’s as apt to us now, with all life subject to a constant state of change. The same is being said about the third studio album of fast-rising Dutch rock band Dool and The Shape Of Fluidity, out now via Prophesy Productions, as is the title track as their latest single.

“The title track of our new album is about the thin line between losing hope and gaining it”, singer Raven van Dorst explained. “Sometimes you can feel as if you are drowning in a vast sea of possibilities, opinions and information. How do you make sure you keep floating and don’t drown? You want to try something new, but you also want to stay close to yourself. ‘The only way to do this is to not be afraid to take the plunge, and dive head first in whichever challenge you face.”

Available here, you can check out the video for the single here at RAMzine.

The Shape Of Fluidity album revolves around themes of personal change, physical change, psychological change, and the ever-changing world around us. Dool, and particularly singer and guitarist Raven van Dorst ask questions: How does change affect us? How do we keep being ourselves in a world that is so incredibly demanding and aggressive towards the individual? We must be as fluid as water to navigate ourselves through this ocean of possibilities and uncertainties – and make peace with chaos and impermanence.

Musically, Dool continue on the path laid out on their two previous studio recordings with added metal elements, while displaying a maturity and focus in songwriting that has grown out of experience. The Shape Of Fluidity is said to exhibit eclectic yet seamless amalgamation of progressive and post-rock as well as doom and heavy metal in combination with an inherent catchiness and a dynamic backdrop.

Setting it apart from its predecessors, this is a collective endeavour, combined the songwriting forces of trio van Dorst, and guitarists Nick Polak and Omar Iskandr. In the rhythm section, bass player JB van der Wal has been joined by new drummer Vincent Kreyder. While, on the technical side of the production,Magnus Lindberg (Cult Of Luna, Russian Circles, Tribulation) has engineered and mixing the record, and it’s been mastered by Ted Jensen (AC/DC, Talking Heads, Muse, Ghost).

The theme of the album pitches the concept of identity against the backdrop of a world in constant flux, connecting the album’s lyrics to the biography of the band’s lead vocalist, van Dorst: Born intersex, doctors at the time assumed that they could surgically determine which kind of life the infant should lead and decided that the child should be a girl. This has led to a life full of soul searching, fighting taboos and breaking boundaries, until recently deciding to reclaim that which others have tried so hard to take away, and finally embrace an hermaphroditic nature.

This much more personal approach than before does by no means become self-centred. The lyrics of The Shape Of Fluidity can easily be read as universal stories about finding oneself, swimming against the stream, and facing the world head on. We are all affected by questions of change and identity, but it is only legitimate and natural that art also reflects the artists as well as the world around them.

The band derived the name Dool from the Dutch word for wandering. When their debut album Here Now, There Then was released in 2017, receiving international success, even as they established a reputation live, playing several tours and often in sold-out venues while performing at all the main festivals. With their sophomore full-length Summerland released in 2020, Dool scored even better, and having played shows in front of sold out houses and decided to release the live album Visions Of Summerland.

Now, for The Shape Of Fluidity, renowned French artist Valnoir (Metastazis) has created a semi-transparent flag through hardening a liquid in a metamorphosis by reducing temperature, that is shown on the cover. Imagery, lyrics, and music all flow together and pose questions about identity, freedom, life, and the will to change things that hold more than just one finger straight at the pulse of the zeitgeist – but without ever pointing or raising it.

Dool will be putting in a UK performance as part of the Damnation Festival in Manchester on 2nd November, alongside Nails, Bleeding Through, Russian Circles and others.

The Shape Of Fluidity is available as a 36-page hardcover CD artbook, gatefold ltd. crystal clear vinyl LP, gatefold black vinyl LP, and as a digipak CD here.

Paul H Birch
Paul H Birch
RAMzine Senior Writer - Writer of fiction, faction and fact, has edited several newsstand magazines. He declares himself a hack for hire but refuses to compromise on the subject of music.

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