Dakrua - Shifting Realities

Year of Release: 2002
Label: Scarlet Records
Catalog Number: SC 042
Format: CD
Total Time: 42:03:00

Dakrua are usually described as a Beauty & The Beast type band, meaning that there is a female lead singer, coupled with a growling male singer either in the background, or as a co-lead. In this case, this is true, but Dakrua are far from being just another B&B band that gets lost in the shuffle of that quickly growing style. Instead, Dakrua is more of a beautiful, melodic metal band with the B*B style of vocals, in which the growler is not really that prominent at all on the disc, just a few parts here and there, and he does it well. At other times, the male vocalist sounds a lot like Eric Clayton (Saviour Machine) in that low, moaning, gothic tone.

On the music side, the band is definitely led by a heavy, crunching guitar and tons of swirling keyboards that give this band a huge, epic, dramatic sound. Between the guitars and keyboards, it almost sounds like a full orchestra at times. The two complement each other very well and drive the music in turn, each giving the other time alone, or combining their strengths and pummeling the listener with absolute warmth and power. The music is anything but typical B*B style - which mostly consists of slow to mid-tempo, gloomy, droning chords. With Dakrua, it's full speed ahead with mid to fast paced tempos, usually led into the song by either a beautiful mix of vocals and keyboards, or guitar. What this band excels at is creating beautiful, mesmerizing, warm melodies without sounding too pretty. With every song comes a ton of warm melodies driven by powerful chunking guitar chords that easily take the listener to new heights. At times you want to head bang with the power chords and drumming, other times you want to relive your past memories due to the dreamy passages, and others you want to toe tap to the easy to follow melodies. The music is able to make the listener feel many things all at once and it's not hard to find yourself drifting to another place while listening. There is power to be found everywhere thanks to the heavy guitar chords and powerful drumming and rhythms.

Eva Rondinelli is not your average female lead singer. One might expect to find a soft, chanting-like, powerless female singer out front here like most B*B bands, but Eva is definitely more powerful, and sounds more mature than most I've heard in this style to date. Her voice is as powerful as the music is, and has to be to keep pace with the thunder of the rest of the band. She never sounds strained, soars when called for, and can softly mesmerize when need be. She has one of the better female voices I've heard in metal recently, and definitely fits this band like a glove. The power and glory of this music can only be sung with a voice that is powerful and beautiful, and Eva provides power and beauty without being overbearing; she is a joy to listen to.

The production is just about unmatched these days. I've always had a problem with most Italian metal productions, except when someone from Germany or somewhere else produces it. Here, I say that someone should take down the name of the people who were responsible for this recording as it's absolutely a gem to listen to. Some might say it's too polished and slick, others may say it's too clean and calculated. I say it's perfect, or as perfect as it gets. I cannot pick out a single instrument that dominates the sound, but rather all instruments are recorded brilliantly -- if I had to choose an instrument for overall clarity and style, I'd go with the drums, which sound absolutely huge. I wish all snare drums sounded like this, even if triggering or sampling was used. This is the way a drum kit sounds - full, rich, heavy, clean and thunderous. As for the rest of the instruments, the guitars are loaded with thickness and power; the bass is full and heavy, and keyboards are cosmic, and Eva's vocals are beauty itself. I bow down to the creators of this magnificent sound.

Although this release has not gone totally unnoticed, it's a shame that more people have not heard this, and I suspect that it's usually named along with other Beauty & the Beast discs and bands, and there are those who don't venture into this area. I should classify this as beautiful, powerful, dramatic, melodic metal with a female singer. Without a doubt this is one of the best discs I've heard in a long time, and one of the better releases of the year. Absolutely essential for metal lovers who don't mind female vocals.

Ephemerae / Frozen Sun / The Waiting / Deceive Me / Of Life And Will / Divine Masquerade / Dawn Over / Seas Of Silence / Not Mine / The Outer Void / Wasted Words

Eva Rondinelli - vocals
Alessandro Buono - guitars
William Quattrone - bass, vocals
Davide Sangiovanni - drums
Marco Lo Cascio - keyboards

Inner Wasteland (1999)
Shifting Realities (2002)

Genre: Progressive-Power Metal

Origin IT

Added: September 29th 2002
Reviewer: Larry "LarryD" Daglieri

Artist website: dakrua.tripod.com/
Hits: 782
Language: english


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