The darkwave project Iamtheshadow from Lisbon, Portugal began in 2015 by Pedro Code (previously in the bands The Dream Collision and Rainy Days Factory). Now with the lineup consisting of Pedro Code (voices, guitar, synthesizers, programming), Vitor J. Moreira (synthesizers) and Herr G (bass), they have just released their fourth album "Pitchblack" on the German Cold Transmission label. The band from the very moment, when they released their stunning debut "Everything In This Nothingness" back in 2016, attracted a massive amount of attention from the dark scene. They have also proven to be a very productive unit, having released an album every year.

The opener "Lifeless" is a more electronic track, where Pedro’s amazing deep voice dominates and sets the atmosphere. On "Always" that follows, we have a lovely dark melodic tune. Next is the title-track "Pitchblack", a pulsing darkwave track with cold synths spread through it. In similar vein we have "The Days", a bleaker track and the more melodic "Higher Than The Soul". Then we have "Awake & Asleep" that features the familiar voice of Diego Merletto from The Frozen Autumn. A great track with deep melodic bassline and some uplifting synths in the chorus.

Halfway through we hear "Shivers", a song that surely standout, a classic example of Pedro’s songwriting. Electronic drumming, deep basslines, icy synths, melancholy guitar riffs, topped with Pedro’s emotional vocals. We have a shift in style on the track "Ouroboros" that features on vocals Kadri Sammel from Bedless Bones. A rhythmic tune that exchanges the male and female vocals between Pedro and Kadri nicely. On "Grace" they return to Iamtheshadow’s familiar sound, while on the slower "Rise", featuring Yvette Winkler from Vaselyne, we have yet another male-female duet. As we reach towards the end, we have the darker "To Last", a down beat song with a shoegaze feel. The album closes with melodic "Undress", a song that sums up all the general sound of the whole album.

A beautiful album, and it keeps the atmosphere from their last album "Embracing The Fall" from 2018. Again, we hear their artistic influences that vary and navigate from the blackest and sharpest sounds of the 80s. Their modern touch of dark romance, where melody and words touch deeply have managed to make them loved by an ever-growing audience.

Review by Nick Drivas