With an average age of less than 23, a good vocalist, three guitarists and a 6½ member cast (no fulltime keyboardist), Dyecrest has the ideal formula for really big, imaginative sounds. What they've delivered is above average music played well and sung very well, some very good songs, and more unexciting songs that are derivative of the heavier bands in the power metal genre.
Dyecrest recently participated in a contest called "Young Metal Gods". Seven Metal Magazines from Germany, Italy, France, Norway, Finland, and Sweden wanted to discover the next metal heroes, and the prize was a record deal with Noise records. Five unsigned bands with an average age of 23 or less played to a live audience in Germany and the three groups of young metal gods selected were Sweden's Persuader, Germany's Beyond Surface, and Finland's Dyecrest. And true to their word The Way Of Pain, from Noise Records, is the product of that deal.
Despite the dark sounding album title, the gloomy song titles and the horror-mask on the cover art, Dyecrest's style is unquestionably power metal. This is guitar-led music, and taking a lesson from latter-day Iron Maiden, the tri-guitar attack is tastefully restrained. The vocals are mid-to-high ranged standard metal and there's a relaxed delivery that would suggest years of experience. The singing tends to be somewhat one-dimensional, but in some songs it is offset by rather typical 3-part harmonies which introduce just enough variety to rescue the songs from atonality. Although the band lists no fulltime keyboard player there are enough keys here to give the music the texture that is mandatory in power metal, and from a technical perspective, the rhythm section is the strongest element of Dyecrest's music. Another departure from formulaic power metal, there isn't a dragon or a hobbit to be seen, and the lyrics deal with real-world issues.
In summary – most tracks are a bit simpler than most in heavy / power metal genre, yet there are some really elegant, almost progressive-metal moments that will make you sit up and take note.
Keep an eye on Dyecrest. This is a very competent band of musicians who were doubtlessly a deserved winner of the competition. But until they have a few more CDs under their collective belt, the Blind Guardians and the Hammerfalls of the world can rest easy – their position at the top of the power metal stack is in no immediate danger.
- For All The Weak
- Into The Void
- Made Me Believe
- Last Man Standing
- Lost Faith
- The Game
- Kneeling Down
- All In Vain
- Until Death Do Us Part
- With Pain