Well well well, and I thought Leeds was in England. This is a band from Baltimore, Maryland (USA) whose press release reads like a list of favourites of mine from my youth. They list The Sisters of Mercy, The Mission, Fields of the Nephilim and most surprisingly, The March Violets as influences. They have been compared to Children on Stun and Love Like Blood and while the comparisons are way off, you can hear most of the influences shining.
The vocals? Generally they sound like Wayne Hussey. The music? There you can hear the guitar stylings of that legend of legends Gary Marx crossed with the pounding beat of the good doktor. The bass? It's all Craig Adams. Another influence they ought to have listed would be James Ray and the Performance as even the typesetting they've chosen has adorned many a James Ray single and album cover. I forgot to mention, the other half of the guitar spectrum does indeed have the searing riffs which The Violets used to great effect during their short-lived career. I don't hear any Nephilim influence, the guitarists are not that technical.
Yes, The Drowning Season are completely unoriginal at this point and if you take a cue from history, you'll also know that at one point The Sisters were also dismissed as hacks whose only claim to fame was taking the piss out of everything and shamelessly wallowing in their influences. If this is indeed the route that The Drowning Season are taking then all the best to them. What better way to find yourself as band I ask. And no, these guys don't "rock". They take time to exude some interest in the song structure. Shocker.
I would not recommend this album to anyone who is not in it for the long haul as this band have more than a mountain to climb. Take a look at their press photo and it looks right out of the provinces of England in say 1983 or 1984. Maryland, you say? Who knew?