Album Reviews

Domination Black – Dimension: Death Review

Released By : Kanki Rekords

Release Date: February 22nd 2012

Genre: Power Metal

Links: http://www.dominationblack.com/

 

Line Up:

Lauri Eerola / Bass

Juha Beck / Drums

Teppo Heiskanen / Guitars

Ville Wiren / Guitars

Juuso Elminen / Keyboards

Matias Palm / Vocals

 

Tracklist:

01. Legacy Of Fears

02. Passage Of the Dead

03. Porter At The Gates of Hell

04. The Final Sigh

05. Dimension: Death

06. Cold Touch

07. Angel Dark

08. Evilizer

09. The Hellbound

 

I’ve never heard either of Domination Black’s previous two albums, but one thing got me excited to hear their newest effort, Dimension: Death: It features the very versatile, and simply awesome vocalist, Matias Palm. First appearing with the unfortunately not too well known Heavy Metal Perse (who only sing in in Finnish), he was also on last year’s excellent Merging Flare debut. Both albums I’d heard with him up to this point had been very good, so would this be an exception? Nope, not at all.

I was expecting something fairly aggressive based on the band name, album name, song names, and artwork, so I was immediately surprised by the opener “Legacy of Fears”. A 10 minute epic, this song is symphonic in a very different way, as instead of the typical epic and bombastic sound, we have some very dark and twisted symphonic keys, the type of keys you’d more expect to hear on a Symphonic Black Metal album, and these drive the song while creating a chilling atmosphere, before the rest of the band enters in. The keys are the most important part of the song, though Matias ensures the chorus is also fantastic, and the music settles into a nice groove once it gets going, never really speeding up. There’s also a nice extended instrumental interlude halfway through, where the keys once again dominate. Overall, a very interesting way to start the album, and definitely one of the highlights. Next up is “Passage of the Dead”, and this gives a better idea of what the rest of the album sounds like.

The overall dark tone of the opener remains (as does the interesting keyboard sound), though the guitars mostly taking center stage, and there’s a good mix of fast and mid-tempo songs, with each song having a mix of great riffs and even better melodies, giving plenty of room for Matias to shine. The keys even take a more standard sound on “Cold Touch”, which happens to be the closest to what you’d expect from a Finnish band, with a very strong emphasis on the melodies, and a truly outstanding chorus. Aside from the lone ballad “Angel Dark”, the rest of the album is a bit more aggressive, with “Porter At The Gates of Hell”, probably being the most intense. I find the songwriting is good but not the greatest, since only four songs seem to really be sticking with me at the time of this review. A few songs in the middle song a little too similar for my tastes.

My favorite aspect of the album is obviously the vocals, and once again Matias delivers. I’d known him for being able to pull off several types of vocals before, though here he mostly uses his standard clean voice, which still manages to sound quite unique anyway, as it’s fairly gruff yet still pleasant all the same. He displays his excellent softer vocals on “Angel Dark”, where on “The Final Sigh” and “Evilizer”, he launches into his awesome falsetto. He does an awesome job throughout the album, and especially on the choruses.

For the most part, Dimension: Death doesn’t break a lot of new ground, though the keys do sound particularly impressive, and overall this is some solid Power Metal, with a fairly dark tone and some aggressive riffs at points. The songwriting could certainly be a bit better, though the choruses are often great, and there are plenty of memorable moments throughout. Highly recommended for fans of the genre. Anyone else would maybe like the opener, but not much else.

 

Written by Travis

Ratings   Travis    8/10

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