Divine Ascension – The Uncovering

Rating: 4/5
Distributor/label: http://www.vicisolum.com/
Released: 2018
Buy Album: https://divineascension1.bandcamp.com/album/the-uncovering
Band Website: https://www.facebook.com/divineascension/

Band line-up:

Jennifer Borg – Vocals
Karl “Inski” Szulik – Guitars
Jason Meracis – Bass
Luke Wenczel – Drums

Tracklisting:

1. Evermore
2. Prisoner
3. The Fallen
4. Pursuit Of Desire
5. New World
6. Revolution Phase
7. Beyond The Line
8. One Step From Here
9. Bittersweet Divide
10. Vultures

Review:

Divine Ascension are an Australian progressive metal band on the Vicisolum Productions record label. They released their latest album ‘The Uncovering’ on 16 November. It is modern sounding, fast-paced and forceful, utilising keyboards, expressive singing and spooky cinematic elements. DA have toured Europe supporting power/symphonic metallers Stratovarius and Gloryhammer, and have toured Australia with Blind Guardian. Whilst doing so, they have wowed their fans with their original and wild performances.

DA are certainly a band that can master their instrumentation. It’s not every day you hear complex bass lines/guitar riffs/keyboard melodies behind singing that doesn’t sound cluttered and distracting. Lesser bands would only dare using more advanced, prog experimentations in their instrumental sections. However, it would be nice if the band built on their bolder ideas, found in the song ‘Pursuit of Desire’ for example. The bass, guitars and vocals all play very different parts simultaneously in that particular number, and the way the striking keys shine out also make it a highlight.

Just because they are masters of cooperation, that’s not to say that the instrumentalists neglect solo sections. When they arrive, they are flashy and virtuosic, without being tiresome and mere filler. The guitarists out there will no doubt admire the tapping and speed picking, for example. Other times the leads are uncharacteristically melodic for their genres, and even the bassist gets some time for himself. Whilst everything is put together well, many of the vocal parts are rather average, even if well executed. What listeners will likely remember from the music, is its sophistication, rather than its singability which is a shame. It needs to be more anthemic, like classic Stratovarius is.

In conclusion, this is power metal that is more dramatic, audacious and musical than most similar bands, but it isn’t without its flaws. However this music will certainly interest those who are into 6 string/4 string musical pyrotechnics, as they are superior than the stuff most bands can come up with, no matter what style they play in. The drums are kind of cliched with their relentless double peddling and even the smallest of innovations would be appreciated, but they do still serve the purpose of dealing out great power. This music isn’t classic, but it is worth adding to any kind of metal collection.

Review by Simon Wiedemann
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