Frontiers [Release date 09.10.20]
Tenth album from Italian Prog Metallers, DGM. In which they examine the notion that the journey (of life) is more important than the destination.
With all of the tracks, there’s a direct correlation between the events the song represents and the controlled musical cacophany. The song titles offer a clue… ‘Stranded’, ‘Silence’, ‘Curtain’ (big clue there) and so on.
The breathless opener, ‘Flesh And Blood’, slows up only for a superbly uplifting chorus. The relentlessly pounding rhythms,and the screaming guitar, which move from speed freak to searing, melodic soloing, represents the pain of birth and arrival in the world.
Lyrically, ‘Surrender’ progresses to the child/parent relationship, and makes a subtle, but definitive move into hard rock, as does the excellent ‘Fate’, one of the album’s outstandingly good tracks, trading the aggressive vocals and guitars for some beautifully melodic moments. In fact, stylistically, much of the album switches fluidly between genres.
‘Hope’ is perhaps the prime example, starting life as exhausting, mouth open, piledriving power metal. Then jumping ship, sailing a course through the hard rock territory of class bands like Gotthard and Mad Max, occasionally negotiating eruptions of sonic turbulence. It’s an exhilarating journey, and never pushes too far into “epic” territory, thanks goodness, that approach would have undermined the album’s theme.
As has been widely reported, the title track’s singing, soughing violin and crashing chords are ready made for a Kansas comparison. Which is understandable but unfair. This song stands on its own. Marco Basile’s vocals connect directly with the song’s lyrics of love, loss and regret, transcending all possible genre limitations. He raises an already powerful piece, musically, into album standout position, by a distance.
Considering this is not the band who started life as DGM ten albums ago, this is where any decent band would have wanted to end up. ****
Review by Brian McGowan
David Randall presents a weekly show on Get Ready to ROCK! Radio, Sundays at 22:00 BST (GMT+1, repeated on Mondays and Fridays), when he invites listeners to ‘Assume The Position’. This show was first broadcast on 1 August 2021 and includes the Top 10 albums at www.getreadytorock.com for that week and an interview with “metal queen” Lee Aaron.
UK Blues Broadcaster of the Year (2020 and 2021 Finalist) Pete Feenstra presents his weekly Rock & Blues Show on Tuesday at 19:00 ( BST, GMT+1) as part of a five hour blues rock marathon “Tuesday is Bluesday at GRTR!”. The show is repeated on Wednesdays at 22:00, Fridays at 20:00). This show was first broadcast 7 September 2021.
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Featured Albums w/c 6 September 2021 (Mon-Fri)
09:00-12:00 HEARTLAND Into The Future (Escape Music)
12:00-13:00 VEGA Anarchy And Unity (Frontiers)
14:00-16:00 JACKSON BROWNE Downhill From Everywhere (indie)
Power Plays w/c 20 September 2021 (Mon-Fri)
BAD TOUCH Twenty Five Miles (Marshall)
THE HUMAN VEIL Enemies (indie)
DIPLOMATIC IMMUNITY Now’s The Time (Golden Robot Records)
VANSLEEP Oceans (indie)
TRUE NORTH Save Me (Out Of Line Music)
SORROW & THE SPIRE In The City Tonight (Golden Robot Records)
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