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Dendera: Pillars Of Creation

Having already made strong inroads with the debut EP, We Must Fight, album, The Killing Floor and numerous incendiary live shows, UK metallers Dendera return with album number two, Pillars Of Creation. Iron Maiden have always been seen as this act's main touching point and one they've openly acknowledged, the obvious bedfellows of Judas Priest also an influence. With Pillars both those bands are still in evidence, however Dendera have matured and brought in a wider sound to compliment the obvious talents they've already shown. In general everything on this album has been ramped up just a touch, a balancing act of melody and aggression mastered with apparent ease. Now alongside the stunning Bruce Dickinson meets Damian Wilson vocals from Ashley Edison and galloping drums from Andy Finch, we find guitarists Steve Main and Tony Fuller (the latter I believe having just departed the band, unfortunately) adding some serious crunch to the Dendera mix. Think Anthrax in their prime Bush era, or mid-period Megadeth and then marry that to the melody and drama of Maiden and Priest and what Pillars Of Creation becomes is a serious metal beast with a whole range of attacks. It's a knock out concoction, majestic and pulsating, yet gritty and brutal, the combined smack of power and precision a sound to behold. Tying it all in place is bassist Bradley Edison, the four-stringer reining in his Steve Harris-machine gun gallops just enough to weave a meandering path of bulging bass in amongst the rugged riffs.

Quality over quantity comes into play, only eight songs of good length making a perfectly balanced album. None of the tracks are aiming for "epic" or "progressive" territory and yet with nearly everything landing in the 6 minute plus category, Dendera have been able to create distinct tracks with real identity and variety. The more brutish side of the coin is flipped with "The Daylight Ending", where a thunder of double kicks sparks off a staccato riff, before a soaring chorus spins the song on its head and into out and out Maiden-land. If anything marks Ashley out as a mighty vocalist, it is how seamlessly he can cover the ground from soaring singer to aggressive snarler and thankfully he resists the temptation to spoil the effect with gutturals. "Disillusioned" however eschews the Maiden comparisons, clever harmonised vocals adding a sharp edge to a track of unrelenting aggression, while "Edge Of Tomorrow" infuses that approach with one of the best riffs I've heard this year. As if that wasn't enough, "Bloodlust" has the temerity to offer hooks so sharp they'll tear your face off as you sing along with the stunning full on vocals and bang your head to the proudly pounding drums, every aspect of the songs handled with a breathtaking believability.

In recent years the UK has seen a real upsurge in quality young rock acts coming from its shores, so it's a real pleasure to proclaim it now also has a young metal act with the ability and songs to hit the big time. Previously I've had no hesitation in proclaiming that Dendera had the promise to be real contenders. It's time to rip that script up, for with Pillars Of Creation they haven't promised anything, they gone and bloody well delivered it.

Track Listing
1. Claim our Throne
2. Bloodlust
3. In High Tide
4. Disillusioned
5. The Daylight Ending
6. The Chosen One
7. Unholy
8. Edge of Tomorrow

Added: June 14th 2015
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: Dendera online
Hits: 1824
Language: english

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