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Disillusion: Gloria

Gloria is the latest release from industrial metal trio Disillusion. After the success of 2004's Back to Times of Splendor, the band has shifted gears a bit, putting together this latest platter which draws heavily upon electronic styles, techno beats, and plenty of groove. Sure, there's still tons of heavy guitars and rampaging rhythms, but singer/guitarist Schmidt, drummer Maluschka, and guitarist Marthel throw in so many different styles on each song that you are constantly left guessing what is coming next. One minute they sound like a Rammstein knock-off ("The Black Sea") and the next a strange hybrid of Nine Inch Nails and David Bowie ("Dread It"), each angle offering up something different, unique, and at times bizarre. Upon repeated spins, the use of effects laden and distorted vocals, as well as monotone narration, gets a tad annoying, especially if you were expecting the clean & death metal vocals that the band have used in the past. Rhythmically speaking, there's some tight grooves here that will get your body moving, and the band as always does a great job of bouncing from punishing metal power to electronic, techno-fused industrial passages, all within the same song. When they stick to straight kick ass inustrial metal, the results are damn good, like on the bulldozing "The Hole We Are In", complete with some intense guitar riffs and tortured screams, which gives way to wild electronic keyboard effects and clever clean vocals. One of the best tunes on the CD is "Save the Past", a pseudo-gothic/industrial metal piece with a cool guitar riff and memorable chorus.

Overall, Gloria is pretty schizophrenic stuff, definitely not for everyone, but if you have an open mind and are into exploring some of metal's more fringe and avant-garde styles, the music of Disillusion just might be for you.

Track Listing
1. The Black Sea
2. Dread It
3. Don't Go Any Further
4. Avalanche
5. Gloria
6. Aerophobic
7. The Hole We Are In
8. Save The Past
9. Lava
10. Too Many Broken Cease Fires
11. Untiefen

Added: April 22nd 2007
Reviewer: Pete Pardo
Related Link: Band Website
Hits: 5132
Language: english

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Disillusion: Gloria
Posted by Murat Batmaz, SoT Staff Writer on 2007-04-22 16:18:20
My Score:

Gloria is an unbelievable departure from Disillusion's amazing debut Back to Times of Splendor, which was a great mix of melodic metal offering with both clean and death vocals and bits of progressive arrangements. Gloria abandons their roots and takes on quite an industrial edge, at times evoking Rammstein. The songs are all imbued with lots of electronic elements, cheesy synth patches, overdone processed vocal lines, and ever-present disco beats (see "Xerophobic", easily their worst song to date).

"The Black Sea" is spooky and overtly modern sounding. The vocals are clean but processed through lots of studio effects and therefore hard to understand. The song does contain a heavy guitar slam, but most of it is a synth-dominated wall of sound with plenty of industrial grooves. The band exposes their poppy side on "Dread It", opting for riotous choruses and failing miserably, while the album turns into a terribly arduous listen by the time the third song "Don't Go Any Further" kicks in. One of the most repetitive and boring songs I've heard recently, it is drenced in effect-laden spoken vocals that deliver angst-ridden lyrics and repeat the horrible song title. "Avalanche" does pick up on a melodic guitar harmony, but it's far from saving the disc going downhill. The orchestral arrangement of the title track starts a bit like Therion before a smashing drum and guitar battery plows through the composition. The use of female vocals works relatively well. Sadly though, the industrial male voice is awful -- imagine a boring spoken voice backed by a steady drum and bass beat and some horror film-like effects and downtuned industrial guitars churning out simple power chords. Somewhere in the middle, the song quietens down with a cool acoustic part and it gets slightly attention-worthy, but quickly, the same rhythms and beats return to create a symphonic edge thanks to the aforementioned female choir arrangement. And this is still one of the better tunes on this disc.

Overall, the longer, more progressive songwriting has been put aside by shorter (most within the 3-4-minute range) pieces and a more direct musical expression. Unfortunately whatever promise parts of these songs show is immediately destroyed by another Rammstein-like attempt that is neither as interesting nor creative given the potential of this band. The new CD may win them over some new fans, but most of the listeners who discovered Disillusion with their debut are likely to be disappointed. I spent more time with this disc than I do with most releases I dislike, and sadly, it only got worse.

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