Hailing from Leeuwarden, the Netherlands here we have five piece Dimaeon presenting us with their latest release Collapse of the Anthropocene.
Labeling themselves as Progressive Death Metal Band turns out to be a pretty accurate description after the opening classical intro of ‘The Blood Of Millions’ is aggressively shoved aside by grinding technical death metal in the vein of Behemoth but after a promising aggressive start begins to lose its way with some sloppy and misdirected playing as they attempt to straddle the technicality of death metal and their obvious progressive rock inclinations with bursts of guitar solo and keyboard dramatics
The press release promises that “Dimæon tries to give each song a unique character with ingredients from various metal- and non-metal genres.” Which is a promise immediately delivered as ‘Dark Century’ (somewhat jarringly) starts as an acoustic folk song with clean vocals and slowly builds into a full on prog rock ballad, although the ending crescendo is superb even if it does messily merge into the next track.
But it’s from the jagged death metal riff of ‘Subterraneous’ that Dimaeon finally hit upon a solid groove as they take the basic template of technical death metal and add in progressive flourishes rather than trying to be everything at once. It also becomes apparent they can write some tasty death metal riffs as the second half of this track demonstrates.
The importance of having a solid base to work with is amplified on album highlight and rather monstrous ‘The Ruins of Mankind’ which shows they have the ability to be “brutal” as they play the death metal elements with a lot more bite (especially the more focused drums) and work their way through a collection of superb riffing throughout, it certainly feels like a different band from the opening!
What is also apparent is how much tighter the playing style has become and makes the more progressive leanings of ‘Cascade’ and ‘Black Dawn’ all the more enjoyable.
The “non-metal” ingredients re-appear in ‘Glass Mountain’ which includes piano and flutes/whistles but as opposed to driving the song they are present sparingly to add character to the death metal riffing mix.
After the pure death metal of ‘Regolith’ we are treated to album closer ‘Collapse of the Anthropocene’ and its somewhat intimidating 15 minutes run time! Despite that misgiving the twisting turning nature of the increasingly impressive riffs and the occasional prog rock guitar solo ensures it stays engaging.
It’s not perfect especially with the initial misfires but once they hit the groove of Dream Theater meets Behemoth via Opeth they deliver some truly outstanding moments.