This Dies Irae of many was around between 1991 and 2002. The band was an experimental heavy metal act before becoming more progressive, gothic and commercial with the passage of time. Ab Imo Pectore was a 1996 demo. Oz Production issued the debut album Etherial in 1998. The group also issed a split CD with Agony Lords at this time. This was funnily re-issued by GrimmDistribution as Ethereal in 2019. J.M. Dahern (now also on drums) and Fernz reformed the band in 2009 albeit with a new sound. Daniel HG joined on vocals a year later. The band was wrking on a new 2020 album.
Dies Irae is Latin for 'Day Of Wrath.'
DIES IRAE – ETHEREAL – GRIMMDISTRIBUTION
It is not that we do not favour bands experimenting or musicians being true to who they are and doing what they wish. Those things are sacrosanct and certainly permissible. It is just that sometimes we at Metallian Towers cannot abide by the results. This is one of those instances.
Ethereal is the 2019 reissue of the 1998 album called Etherial. Unless the band was assigning lofty qualities to the Iranian Rial currency, the band likely misspelt the word first time around and got around to correcting it with the re-release. Ironically, and perhaps comically, this newer release shows up on the CD player’s display as ‘Etehrial’ yet features a track called Ethereal. This same track was, of course, called Etherial on the original Oz CD. Confused yet? Never mind, let’s just proceed to why the music is not of interest.
Ethereal is ridden with experimentation, variety, slow speeds, higher tempos, technical pieces, My Dying Bride, Anacrusis, violin, spoken vocals and gruff growls. It is all here. One big mess salad of epic boredom proportions. Even the rare person in the mood for something very moody as this hears that the problem is the uninteresting riffs, derivative feeling and the worst of the worst clean vocals that sound like a loutish drunkard seeking redemption from his hairy lover. A good parent would have told his son that he neither is nor will ever be a good clean singer and saved him the embarrassment. Now, there is no doubt that the Internet is full of reviews of this record with the standard-issue 80/100s and 70/100s, but one does not have to be a real metal fan to dislike this jumbled concoction. One has to be candid. Two bonus tracks are tagged to this version and appear after the Outro. It may be that these are culled from live recordings, but the disc or label does not readily shed a light on these. – Ali “The Metallian”
DIES IRAE - NAIVE - GRIMMDISTRIBUTION
The Mexico version of Dies Irae has a chequered past and the band's disbandment (justified) and reformation (cliché) has not changed much. The band is back with the re-release of its 2001 sophomore full-length - featuring a bonus live track - and it is not difficult to see why the band made little headway on the metal scene.
The music begins promisingly enough. It is almost thrashy and soon enough is reminiscent of Dark Tranquillity or early In Flames. It is mostly downhill from there. The harsh vocals should never give way to the 'clean' vocals because the latter sounds drunk and ridiculous with Dies Irae. The music is on a slalom course suffering from schizophrenia skidding from metal to neo-romantic to jazzy and back to techno-metal. What is the point? Track five is a decent metal track with a cool riff, but then comes Slow Slow (or per the band ‘Eslau Eslau’), which is a disaster. If there is a saving grace it is that much of the album is instrumental saving the listener from hearing the clean vocals and suffering.
Naive could be called just that, but it also reminds one of the two laws of the metal scene. One, let the underground remain underground. Second, purity beats a jambalaya any day. - Ali "The Metallian"