Dreamaker - Human Device
It should by now be common knowledge in the metal community that the original line-up in Dark Moor has chosen to go separate ways. Vocalist Elisa C. Martin (also in Fairyland), guitarist Albert Maroto and drummer Jorge Sáez left their former companions and started their own metal constellation, Dreamaker, where they could represent and develop their own musical direction. This new band immediately signed a record deal with the same label as Dark Moor, namely Arise Records, and entered Finnish Sonic Pump Studios for recordings of their debut album in September 2003, and at least for me this premiere release was garbed with much anticipation.
Dreamaker is obviously not supposed to be categorized as Power Metal according to the band info sheet but if this isn't music in that category then I honestly feel I must relearn and revalue my knowledge of the metal genre But that won't be necessary since this really is power metal- and good such as well. Sound-wise of course parallels can be drawn to Dark Moor but to define the music of Dreamaker I think it's more justifiable to focus on the differences and not the similarities. The only real striking likeness between the two bands is naturally Elisa's unmistakable vocals. Besides that, Dreamaker have managed well to create their own quite unique sound and if this is the kind of musical concentration they wanted Dark Moor to take I can understand that there were disagreements. Dreamaker have left the symphonic speedier "happy" metal of Dark Moor behind and instead focus on a more direct approach, mainly based on Elisa's amazing and unique voice, heavy and powerful guitar fret work, intense and bombastic drumming and everything laced with massive and ambient keyboards in a lot more excessive use than in their former band. Other bands that can be placed in comparison are perhaps Mystic Prophecy for the pace and rhythm in the verse sections, Angra (especially the track Without Angels) and also Italian Beholder mainly due to the song structure and the emotional female vocals.
The tracks are generally mid-tempo paced with a few exceptions where the speed is increased and those faster ones are also the ones I favour the most. Especially Killing, Forever in Your Arms, Welcome to My Hell and Crystaline Eyes are for me the most prominent and the strongest contesters to end up getting stuck in the mental vortex. The other track.-material is quite even but with exception for the opener Eye of War that immediately sets a nice tone and the very catchy semi-tempo driven Without Angels, none of the others really stand out more from the rest. And that said, we've come to the only real factor on the downside of the release. Albert Maroto is a very talented song-writer (and guitarist) and the main composer in the band, but the album could have profited by introducing a slightly more fluctuating song-writing concept since it gets a trace too much sameness and particularly regarding the offerings of mid-tempo tenacity.
Instrument-wise though each performer's contributions come together in equal measure but Elisa is as usual the real trademark. Some real light-striking solos from Maroto's instrument are very memorable too but almost as a matter of form Elisa's voice croons flawlessly and her smooth flowing way of vocal delivery make an even more average number reach much higher levels. With her unique way of singing the whole issue is whipped up to something much more fresh-sounding than it otherwise would have been and seriously raises the enjoyment factor. But I also want to credit the terrific production executed by guitarist and main song-writer in Thunderstone, Nino Laurenne and the also as usual impeccable mixing and mastering at Finnvox Studio. Simply excellent sound!
So this new Spanish constellation has overall churned
out some real enjoyable numbers and Human Device represents a strong
and solid foundation from which they can only develop further. If you
favour the bands Elisa's represented so far Dreamaker won't disappoint
and I get very profound positive vibes for the future of this metal
act. Dreamaker perhaps don't exactly qualify as "the new step in
the metal genre" as they're being promoted as but there's certainly
lots of great potential waiting underneath and used properly and unleashed
in full force the road to more supremacy around the globe should lie
I think that this falls a bit flat, since it feels to just go on and on without anything that really sticks out. Fairyland, which Elisa also sings in, is something I really like, but this album I would say is much more comparable with the new Dark Moor album. Similarities in musicality between the bands are obvious, but also in the boringness. The elements of experimentialism with a "modern" sound on this does not work very well either, and just disrupt the sound picture. //Tommy (5,5 of 10)