“Exploring the realm of our dreams in some ethereal balance, unrestrained by a definable sound, in a daunting storm of emotions.” This is how Hungarian metal act Dreamgrave describe the music they create. And a quick listen to any of their songs will give the listener a clear understanding of their ars poetica, as their sound is an eclectic mixture of progressive, symphonic, gothic and neoclassical metal with elements from the extremes of metal (death metal and black metal), which may remind listeners of Opeth, Karnivool, or Haken. Formed in 2007, Dreamgrave have released a demo (“Deadborn Dreams”, 2009) and, after numerous line-up changes, which finally settled in September 2012, the band independently released their highly acclaimed debut concept album “Presentiment” in October 2014. And now Dreamgrave is back with the EP “Monuments”, ready to take their music to the next level.
Drop the Curtain
The Passing Faith in Others
Clocking in at about 24 minutes and featuring only 3 tracks, “Monuments” is an easy and enjoyable listen for any music lover. Extremely atmospheric and highly melodic, it is the blend of female soprano vocals and both clean male vocals and some death metal growls alongside the well-crafted instrumental passages that will fascinate listeners. Yet there is a simplicity to their sound that I haven’t heard in other band which makes it perfect for daydreaming.
The three tracks on this EP couldn’t be more different though still in the same vein. “Drop the Curtain” is a slow-paced track with gentle bass lines wonderfully done by Péter Gilián, acoustic guitars, and soulful female vocal as its main attraction. The lyrics are very beautiful as are the vocal melodies. The chorus also features some male vocals from Dömötör Gyimesi that harmonize incredibly well with Mária Molnár’s voice. Dömötör also shows us his guitar skills by delivering a lovely guitar solo in the second half of the song.
“Monuments” is a more up-tempo and up-beat track as it starts with a bluesy bass riff and Maria’s vocals. The song is taken up a notch when some harsh vocals come in on top of some pounding bass (yes, the bass is really audible in this EP) to give the song a more aggressive vibe. The instrumental ebbs and flows throughout the song as mellow parts are intertwined with more rhythmic and heavy parts that really make you want to get up and dance or headbang. It is a well structured song, with build-ups and climaxes that flow neatly, showcasing the talent and potential of the band.
“The Passing Faith in Others” is a somewhat more cinematic track that starts with vocalizing but soon Krisztina’s violin and Dömötör’s guitar sweep in and carry the melody on harsher notes. I really like the juxtaposition of male and female vocals in this song, as well as János’s keyboard riffs. The instrumental parts are longer on this song, leaving each member enough space to show their skill. It also emphasize on the progressive metal aspect of their music. The final 3 minutes of the song have an oriental feel to them as Mária’s vocals remind me of Zaher Zorgati’s chant on Ayreon’s “Deathcry of a Race” (from “The Source”, 2017).
Dömötör Gyimesi (guitar, vocals)
Tamás Tóth (drums)
Mária Molnár (vocals)
Krisztina Baranyi (violin)
Péter Gilián (bass)
János Mayer (keyboards)