19 Aug 2011

Denyall - Dehumanized [Demo] (2008, Self-released)

The last decade symphonic and gothic metal has prospered immensly with bands like Nightwish, Evanescence, Within Temptation, Epica and Sirenia making their way to the scene. This wave of female-fronted pseudo-gothic bands have spawned hundreds of bands that try to copy their sound.

Denyall is a band that, at first glimps, could just be another one of these bland diva bands. While their songtitels certainly imply so, even at first listen it is clear that they're doing it somewhat differently. Bands lik Within Temptation and Nightwish have a rather melancholic and melodramatic sound to them, but Denyall seems more haunting and full of dispair. The cover features a blackhaired girl sitting in a corner of a bland room in what looks like a straitjacket.
What really makes Denyall stand out from the veritable hordes of diva bands is the utilizing of growls. The vocals can suddenly go from regular clean singing to growling, not unlike that of Battlelore, which is probably the band this also Finnish sextet has most in common with.
For a demo the production is better than one would expect, and even though it contains just 3 songs for a total playtime of 11 minutes and 46 seconds, all these songs are very well-composed and nicely put together. The tracks all fit together perfectly without any major deviation from the overall style, yet it doesn't become stale and uncreative. They utilize a minimal amount of keyboards, thusly not falling into the pit of overly keyboard-dominated symphonic metal like so many others. The guitars actually play some memorable riffs once in a while but still maintain a certain level of heaviness. The variation in the vocals is probably the band's main selling point for me though.

Denyall represents the fact that not all symphonic/gothic bands are talentless hacks. This 3 song demo is filled with great song structures and well thought through tracks. Normally I wouldn't even consider listening to symphonic metal, especially not female-fronted ones. These bands tend to all sound the fucking same, but Denyall manages to steer away from the typical concepts of what is gothic metal.
That being said the demo is a little short for my taste, and symphonic metal really isn't my type of thing. While Denyall - Dehumanized is somewhat different from most symphonic metal, it still is symphonic metal, which I feel is a tried out genre.

In spite of this, Dehumanized receives 7/10 guitars.

1. Dehumanized
2. Garden of the Condemned

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