DGM - Life

(CD 2023, 57:26, Frontiers)

The tracks:
  1- Unravel The Sorrow(6:53)
  2- To The Core(5:56)
  3- The Calling(6:50)
  4- Second Chance(5:35)
  5- Find Your Way(5:24)
  6- Dominate(5:13)
  7- Eve(4:10)
  8- Journey To Nowhere(6:07)
  9- Leave All Behind(5:05)
10- Neuromancer(6:13)

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Life is the 11th album of the Italian prog metal band DGM - the acronym DGM stands for Diego Gianfranco Maurizio - and the musical influences of bands like Symphony X, Pagan's Mind, Dream Theater and Evergrey are again rather “obvious”. The current line up - Marco Basile (vocals), Simone Mularoni (guitars), Emanuele Casali (keys), Andrea Arcangeli (bass guitar) and Fabio Costantino (drums) - has been in place since 2008, so the sound of DGM and the strong musical cohesion stand firmly and unified.

The music of DGM is very intense and it is a blend of hard rock with lots of melody, prog metal elements and power metal characteristics. Songs like The Calling and the opening track Unravel The Sorrow feature clear power metal ideas, but they also have lots of melody and vocal harmony. Speaking of vocals, I kind of get irritated a little bit by the sometimes too “sweet” vocals of Basile; especially when DGM plays a heavy track like for example Second Chance. That said, the guitar riffs, solos, hooks and leads on this album are an absolute treat for the ears, as Life really sounds/feels like a true guitar-centred album. So, check out the instrumental song Eve and you will be amazed by Mularoni's guitar shredding for sure. Find Your Way and Dominate are fast, neck breaking power metal songs, both also featuring a very addictive, accessible groove. The most progressive rock track of the album is called Journey To Nowhere, featuring lots of keyboards, formidable melodies, and really emotional lyrics, while Leave All Behind has a real catchy chorus indeed. Last but not least DGM treats us to a song called Neuromancer; a track filled with the best vocal performance of the entire album, an impressive anthem-like sound, and a beautiful quiet piano outro, finishing this album impressively indeed.

Life is a fast, heavy, progressive power metal album and if you are a DGM fan, or Dream Theater fan, it is a must have album for sure. Play it LOUD and you will be hooked.

**** Martien Koolen (edited by Tracy van Os van den Abeelen)

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