Convocation – No Dawn For The Caliginous Night Review

Band: Convocation
Album: No Dawn For The Caliginous Night
Label: Everlasting Spew Records
Genre: Funeral Doom
Country: Finland
Release Date: November 24th, 2023
For Fans Of: Esoteric, Atramentus, Skepticism

Convocation are a funeral doom group from Finland, and No Dawn For The Caliginous Night is their third full-length release. 2020’s Ashes Coalesce was a solid release, but one that I wanted to like more than I actually did. Funeral doom can be finicky and difficult to connect with given the monumental nature of the music. Ashes Coalesce ended up not hitting the mark as often as it needed to. Still, matching the success of that release could have been insurmountable. Instead Convocation wildly exceeded my expectations for No Dawn For The Caliginous Night and made the best funeral doom release of the year.

Convocation’s approach to funeral doom is one of movement. The band establishes a constant background motif, and repeats it with slight variations to simultaneously make their music sound massive and slow while maintaining interest. The choral harmonies on opener “Graveless Yet Dead” provide an excellent example of this feature. They cut in and out throughout the track’s near-ten minute runtime, and when present they are a dramatic shift in the music and provide a sense that the song is exploring new ground while allowing Convocation to return to their downward arpeggiating from a new context.

This arpeggiating continues beyond the opening track. Again, it allows Convocation to achieve multiple songwriting goals using a simple tool. The arpeggios create motion and allow the music to keep going, but by repeating in a single key they also keep the music in roughly the same place and allow the dust to settle in a way that funeral doom truly needs. When they do finally shift, either to a new riff or a new section of the song, the decision to move seems enormous and also fits naturally into the flow of the song.

Many musicians do these things and have done them for centuries. Convocation are not out there saying “These arpeggio things are pretty cool, wonder why no one’s thought of this before.” Baroque-era composers would do this out of habit to extend the lengths of their songs or to smooth out a key change. Convocation separate themselves from the pack via effective use of their tools. Both a master chef and myself could use the same ingredients to make the same food items, but you would rightly pay money for the meal from the master chef while avoiding the meal from me at all costs out of concern for your health. No Dawn For The Caliginous Night doesn’t just contain these tools, and doesn’t just use them effectively, but avoids overusing them. While Convocation lean heavily into repetition in their writing style, they know exactly when to switch it up and go with more typical death metal sound.

The big, honking downside on this record is the production. While the album has clarity throughout the instruments and depth in the dynamics, at some of the weaker moments the instruments sound too artificial and midi-spawned. For an album trying to be immense, No Dawn For The Caliginous Night can wear out the listener sooner than ideal. At less than fifty minutes this record might even qualify as short for a funeral doom release. Still, the emotional intensity combined with the production combined with long songs can lead to burnout.

But funeral doom being exhausting can be a feature of the music. While I wouldn’t listen to Dawn For The Caliginous Night in every circumstance, Convocation have made an excellent release. The music will make impact craters on your brain. I recommend this to any fan of funeral doom, and anyone in the mood for something this immense.

Rating: 9/10


  1. Graveless yet Dead
  2. Atychiphobia
  3. Between Aether and Land
  4. Lepers and Derelicts
  5. Procession

Total Playing Time: 48:28

Click here to visit Convocation’s Bandcamp