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DIES IRAE
DIES IRAE
The Sin War
(Metal Blade Records)
40:02min

DIES IRAE previous and first effort ("Immolated", also issued on Metal Blade in 2000) was a rather pleasant surprise, because this band featuring Mauser and Doc from the Polish gods VADER offered a nice alternative to the somewhat disappointing and rushed "Litany" album. "The Sin War" confirms two years later that DIES IRAES has not to be taken as a mere side project but as a real band instead, with their own agenda and expanded musical ambitions. Even if DIES IRAE have kept their basic sound intact, this time the song writing shows a lot more maturity and originality. And the result is a killer, that I can tell! Don't expect a pitiful VADER copying attempt, even is the spirit of keeping the flame of pure and classic Death Metal still burning is here also. Put simply, DIES IRAE play a very technical form of Death Metal with a crystal clear sound (very convincing production) and needless to say, the musicianship is stellar (do we have to expect otherwise, with talented musicians as those?). The band knows how to keep the listening interest ever present, not a filler song here for sure, and the musicians are not afraid to explore wider horizons (for example, you will found a distinct DISSECTION flavor on 'Horde Of Angry Daemons' and a VOIVOD touch on the intro of 'Infinity', while the song 'Beyond Sensual' made me funnily think of an OBITUARY number, even if the sound is not the same). The music composed and performed by the four DIES IRAE warriors has the merit to show from where Death Metal comes (that is: Heavy Metal) while being intense as hell (that is also the main interest of a band like VADER who never relied on the trend of the day and always kept their Thrash approach of music), as they sound neither old school nor modern but right in the middle. No overuse of blast beats, research for new rhythms, original melodic ideas and no ludicrous growlings: all these elements contribute to the extreme quality of this, yes, elegant release. Have I to stress out the fantastic performance of drummer Doc here? I think not! Also the guitar work is faultless, please note that Hiro usually plays in the band SCEPTIC rumored to be a very technical Death Metal outfit too (rumored? Hey Edouard - they ARE! - Frank). And last but no least, bassist Novy displays his talents in DEVILYN (check their last offering, reviewed elsewhere in this site). The pacing in each of the songs vary a lot, from slow crunching parts to speed outbursts, and the mix comes out harmonious and fluid. My personal fave is the song 'Nine Angel', it could be seen like a KING DIAMOND tune with a Death edge, a feast! To sum it up: check out this release, I am pretty sure you will find it interesting, even if I can't call it essential in one's collection. But personally speaking though, I am glad to have it in mine!

Edouard Vergriete

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