Dutch dark rock band Dool explore the evolution of the soul on Summerland | Music Review | Chicago Reader

Dutch dark rock band Dool explore the evolution of the soul on Summerland 

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Nona Limmen

Helmed by charismatic vocalist and guitarist Ryanne van Dorst, Dool combine pop hooks with heady lyrics and complex songwriting that draws from the underbelly of metal, psych, doom, occult rock, and more. Formed in Rotterdam in 2015 by members of Dutch rock outfits Elle Bandita, the Devil’s Blood, and Gold, the band (whose name translates to “Wandering”) have yet to tour the States, but they made waves in the heavy-music world with their 2017 debut, Here Now, There Then. On their brand-new second album, Summerland (Prophecy Productions), Dool lean into the arena-friendly side of their sound without compromising their aesthetic. The album’s name nods to a pagan concept of the afterlife—an idyllic place the soul can visit between incarnations or settle in after reaching a final ascension—and songs such as the title track and album closer “Dust & Shadow” are enhanced by otherworldly, majestic atmospheres. But Dool aren’t concerned solely with what happens after we leave this plane, but also with the road traveled and personal evolution along the way. To that end, they’re more earthbound on tracks such as “Ode to the Future,” anchored by a rich strummed guitar rhythm reminiscent of Patti Smith classic “Dancing Barefoot.” Van Dorst’s vivid lyrics often address themes of self-questioning and strife, and when they’re interwoven into rock epics such as “The Well’s Run Dry” (which features a spoken-word passage from Bölzer front man Okoi Jones), no challenge seems insurmountable. It’s easy to imagine radio-ready album single “Wolf Moon” and rock rager “Be Your Sins” (with a fiery Hammond organ solo by Swedish metal keyboardist Per Wiberg) as gateway drugs for mainstream rock and metal listeners who are primed to discover more esoteric sounds. Dool deliver on that front as well: “God Particle” features a Middle Eastern-inspired intro, a dynamic flow, and an intensity enriched by the album’s backing vocalist, former Devil’s Blood and current Molasses front woman Farida Lemouchi.   v

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