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On disc: DrivHell

A Journey As A Life - Claudia Ehrhardt - 9 stars

A Journey As A Life

A Journey As A Life
(Copro Productions - 2010)

This is the debut album of Milan-based band DrivHell. The band was founded in 1998 and in 2000 they released their first demo Sunrize, another one followed in 2006. It seems that the guys really took their time to make their debut as perfect as possible.
A short symphonic opening leads you into the track Pictures On A Score. The Italian progsters present here a song with symphonic elements, heavy riffs and vocals which remind me a bit of Saga as well as Andre McDermott (Threshold era). The spoken words part - in Italian - sounds a bit like a TV host... But as I have no clue what he says, this is just a guess... But the guys vary a lot, so it's always just a snapshot when they remind you of something else, coz within a moment they head into a different direction. And still manage to channel everything into a homogenous sound! The Shining Stone begins slowly and put the focus on Jonatan Spangnuolo's vocals, later the song becomes keyboard-based atmospheric tune. For a band with 2 keyboarders the guitar is quite dominant, even if there are also keyboard-laden passages. The Uproar Of The World is offers heavy riffs, but also spheric keyboards, spoken words and soaring vocals. At ... In A Sweet Trap Jonatan is joined by a female singer. The closer Fluttering Hell is the longest track with about 8+ minutes. But as all songs are 5+ minutes and never get boring, the Italians manage well to keep the listeners attention through the song. Partly they remind me off Pain Of Salvation... And I think fans of Daniel Gildenlöw won't be disappointed by DrivHell!
Kudos for this debut! The songs are complex, but catchy. Played on a high level and even if you might think of one or the other progressive band, they aren't copycats! The Milanese manage to create soundscapes based on progressive sounds, complex structures and expressive vocals. Soundwise there is nothing to complain and the final touch, the mastering, was done by Mika Jussila at Finnvox. Everybody who is into art rock, progressive rock and metal should check out DrivHell! But be aware that this CD is like a drug, it's addictive!
For A Journey As A Life - Guideline for a correct interpretation click here!

9 stars

Claudia Ehrhardt


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