Destrage
The Chosen One


3.5
great

Review

by SitarHero CONTRIBUTOR (60 Reviews)
May 30th, 2019 | 57 replies


Release Date: 2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Growing up is hard, man!

The Chosen One is Destrage’s most mature and cohesive work yet and whether that’s a good thing or not depends on your point of view. It’s a good (some might even say great) progressive metal album that has a ton of incredible musicianship and an impressive vocal performance from the ever-improving Paolo Colavolpe, but it also lacks the insanely entertaining and utterly ridiculous experimentation that defined the band’s breakout albums, The King is Fat ’n’ Old and Are You Kidding Me¿ No. (TKIFNO and AYKMN, henceforth). The band has traded in its raw energy and everything-AND-the-kitchen-sink approach to songwriting for greater focus on melody and flow, and while the results are definitely catchy they're also not as much fun as they used to be.

To be fair, Destrage can still be unpredictable and ridiculous when they really want to be, like on the jazz fusion-esque saxophone solos of “Mr. Bugman” and on the drum ’n’ bass verses of “Rage, My Alibi”, but moments like these are few and far between. While Matteo Di Gioia and Ralph Salati still trade pummeling riffs, soaring leads and atonal harmonies like few else can, and Federico Paulovich continues to prove that he’s one of the best metal drummers around, this version of Destrage leans on Colavolpe’s vocals (and improving English) to drive the album.

Colavolpe’s vocals aren’t a tour de force, per se, but he certainly holds court by writing some excellent hooks on the uptempo rockers “About That” and “Hey, Stranger!”, and really comes into his own when the band experiments with psychedelia on “At the Cost of Pleasure” and “The Gifted One”. Throughout the album, Colavolpe favours his singing voice over his hardcore shouts and death metal grunts in keeping with the rest of the band’s streamlining of their arrangements. However, this is the one area where the results of Destrage’s stylistic streamlining are an unmitigated success because they contribute the most towards the album’s catchiness and memorability. When he does dip into his bag of vocal tricks, the effect is more impactful than in the past when he seemingly constantly cycled through his rolodex of voices.

Ultimately, if you like relatively straightforward and tasteful technical metal, with strong hooks and stunning musicianship, this is the Destrage album for you. But, if you prefer the version of Destrage that would drop a random bossa nova break into the middle of a groove metal song before segueing into some blast beats then The Chosen One is going to leave you disappointed. Evolution and maturation are particularly difficult for metal bands because they have to deal with fans who have, ironically, little patience for both artistic stagnation as well as drastic changes in direction. The Chosen One isn’t all that drastic of a change for Destrage, especially since it follows 2016’s A Means to No End which was the true signifier of Destrage’s pivot into maturity. What The Chosen One is, is a confident and controlled blowtorch of an album, but it’s hard not to miss the napalm bombs of creativity that were TKIFNO and AYKMN. While maturity might be a good look for Destrage, it's a look that not everyone is going to appreciate.


The album, and Destrage's other MetalBlade albums, can be streamed and downloaded here:
https://destrage.bandcamp.com/



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user ratings (40)
Chart.
3.4
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
SitarHero
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


10358 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Finally got this puppy done. Tried to be as objective as I can, but I'm not happy with the results.

bloc
May 30th 2019


57026 Comments


So glad this didn't have any of the cringe moments and melodies from their first 3 albums. Sounds way more mature, even though the lyrics are probably still dumb lol

Digging: Ultravox - Vienna

SitarHero
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


10358 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Those "cringe" moments are what made those albums so damn fun for me.

bloc
May 30th 2019


57026 Comments


I hated them

peartnoy
May 30th 2019


1409 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

AYKM?N was an incredibly fun album. They could have kept the same diversity while tightening the songwriting moving forward but they didn't. There's not much that's impressive or memorable about their music anymore. Still fun at times, but so meh overall.

TheNotrap
May 30th 2019


11607 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Nice, a 3.5 growth ;) great review, as always



Super catchy stuff, I need to check their previous albums

Digging: Humanity's Last Breath - Abyssal

SitarHero
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


10358 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Ha! Thanks Notrap, but it's a low 3.5. I can understand why people like this, and I do too to an extent, but it's not the Destrage I fell in love with.



I agree with peartnoy in that respect.

peartnoy
May 30th 2019


1409 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

@TheNotrap



AYKM?N is their best balanced between weird/diverse/creative and well-written songs with badass riffs.

Hawks
May 30th 2019


73095 Comments


The Chosmen One

Digging: Erang - Kingdom Of Erang

TheNotrap
May 30th 2019


11607 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0 | Sound Off

Fair enough SH ;)



I'll jam AYKM?N asap peartnoy, sounds promising

peartnoy
May 30th 2019


1409 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Tell us how you feel about it, I'm curious

hiyabootchie
May 30th 2019


412 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

kinds of reminds me of a metalcore version of Janes Addiction.

SitarHero
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


10358 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

That's not a bad description of this album. They used to be a prog metal version of SOAD though.

BrushedRed
May 30th 2019


3145 Comments


It amazes me at how like 10 years ago I’d eat this up like cake but now I can barely make it through a song. For what it is, I suppose it’s good. It reminds me of The Human Abstract.

Nocte
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


9922 Comments


This sounds like fun

SitarHero
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


10358 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Well if you think THIS is fun you should check out Are You Kidding Me? No.

...he said for seemingly the thousandth time. :D

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


16484 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Sitar delivering the goods! This is a great review man, it's on point. I honestly like this more streamlined version of the band, but it's all a matter of taste.



Digging: Grima - Will of the Primordial

SitarHero
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


10358 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Thanks Dewi! This was a tough one to write for me personally, but I guess I'm glad I pushed through and did it. Did you make it all the way through their discog?

Dewinged
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


16484 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

I did yeah, this and The King are probably my favorites. I know AYKMN has a special place in your heart but it didn't connect me with me from the get go. I've only jammed it once and a half tho.

SitarHero
Contributing Reviewer
May 30th 2019


10358 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Ha! If you can get past TKIFNO's godawful snare sound you can get past anything. :D

But that's fair. Funnily enough I think it was "Where the Things Have No Colour" on AYKMN which first grabbed my attention and it's kind of a preview of the direction that the band was about to go in.



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