Review Summary: Aided by a new vocalist Dreamshade have indeed been given a new lease on life.
Terrible puns aside there is something about this melodic metalcore act that impresses. Hailing from Switzerland, Dreamshade manage to provide listeners with a highly enjoyable affair while not exactly doing anything fresh, innovative or for that matter anything that has not been done before and that’s what makes The Gift Of Life
all the more impressive; the fact that the band has managed to pull off a successful record without thinking, at all
out of the box. Despite all the ‘safe’ song-writing practices Dreamshade present an album chock full of energy, hooks and display a verbose instrumental effort, often regressing into a screamed verse or gang vocal chant section providing a nice change or break from the usual screamed verse, sung chorus structure that most bands similar in nature depend on. The Gift Of Life
is ultimately solid, from start to finish combining energy with intensity, tranquil and the occasional electronica but what makes Dreamshade’s 2013 release all the more enjoyable is its ability to blend with a crowd in a live setting (especially through sing-a-long chorus’, gang chants and hook lines).
Vocally, this album is a huge step up from the debut. The display is more diverse; less strained and simply suits the melodious style of Dreamshade’s music better. The albums shortest track ‘Our Flame’ highlights the better end of Kevin Calì’s soaring vocals defining his place amongst this highly talented group of musicians, whilst the rest of the release is an excellent display of his screams and growls; often ranging from mid to high end screams and contrasting with some deep death metal-like growls. The Gift Of Life
is admirable with its instrumental effort too; the highest quality point of every instrument collectively is that the band never outweigh each other, each instrument takes its place without managing to overshadow the next further allowing the album to slide through in an almost seamless manner. The guitarists especially make head way of the studio layering process; melodies are woven into rhythm sections (usually in the form of legato tapping) complimenting the occasional keyboard work, tying in well within lyrical phrases. As for highlights, the title track defines positively what the album sounds like. “The Gift Of Life” is everything fans wanted from the record; the low end growls, mid to fast tempo, excellent musicianship and an energy that shows this young group mean business, it also contains an excellent display of the band’s natural talents including a tasteful, albeit small piano interlude.
For Dreamshade, The Gift Of Life
is a big album. With all the right boxes ticked their 2013 release is sure to push them to the fore-front of the metalcore industry. The album itself is driven by raw talent, but thankfully it’s been pulled off in a manner that shows the band as “level-headed” and willing to stick to the sound that they know. With the inclusion of a clearly more talented vocalist and a crystal-million dollar production, Dreamshade truly do know how to separate themselves from a crowded pack without doing anything too much out of the ordinary. Overall, The Gift Of Life
comes at the best of times and is sure to leave a lasting impression on the listener. For anybody looking for some straight-forward metalcore with the occasional progressive death metal influence – this is it. The band is not exactly doing anything new, but with what they’re doing, Dreamshade are doing well in the form of The Gift Of Life