One of the best things about being a music reviewer (or critic, although I hate to use that appellation) is that you get to discover new artists from time to time. The Spanish metal band Darksun is an example of one of those wonderful discoveries that are made from time to time in my musical journey. Darksun plays epic heavy metal of a progressive and symphonic nature. They do it very well, too. Darksun's previous album was done in Spanish, so 'The Dark Side' is their first venture into English. Is language such a barrier when the music is so darn good. I don't think so. 'The Dark Side' is an incredibly enjoyable album of melodic metal with, as I said, symphonic and progressive overtones.
If you somehow have a problem with a band passing over the language barrier, then you will not be disappointed with Darksun. The transition is so smoothly done that it defies critique. Vocalist Daniel González easily, almost effortlessly, delivers the lyrics with equal emotion and clarity. Certainly, he has the blessing of his native tongue forming every word, but that is a good thing. In the end, my hope is that it will make Darksun's music more accessible to the masses simply because they are a very good metal band.
Frankly, I pretty much enjoyed the whole of this album. There is the standard metal introduction, 'Invocation.' Then the next song, 'The Dark Side,' delivers all that you expect from monumental symphonic/progressive metal. And so the rest of the album goes. 'Blood Brothers' mixes power metal with some sophisticated piano work. The progression is gigantic from beginning to end. 'Prisoners Of Fate' begins by kicking it up a notch. González stretches his vocal range with skill and control. The next number, 'Echoes Of The Past,' essentially defines melodic metal. The rhythm section grooves you, the fret work thrills you, and the chorus, with its wonderful vocal arrangement, compels you to listen. The three part 'Elegy' does not quite fit the dictionary definition of the word until you get to Part 2 and the beginning of Part 3. However, all parts are equally impressive as a fine mix of heavy and progressive metal. The album ends as subtlety as the beginning with the quiet, piano driven 'Legend,' a fine cut that gives balance to this album.
'The Dark Side' is an impressive album. Sure, it's the standard stuff, but it's done very, very well. The production is clean and the musicianship is superb. All in all, Darksun pleases on all levels. I look forward to more from this Spanish metal band. Very recommended!
- Craig Hartranft
I'm incredibly impressed with Spanish metal band Darksun's first English release. It has the right mixture of power, symphonic and progressive metal to please all those who love melodic metal. Basically, this band gets it right! Certainly language should not be a barrier, yet Darksun performing in English will hopefully open up a new audience to them. These guys are good!
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