DARK MIRROR - PORTRAIT OF EVIL

KILLER METAL RECORDS

 

Metal To Infinity

Dark Mirror is a Power / Thrash band from Iowa / USA. I have their self entitled EP in my collection and I admit I was planning to buy the new one. Well, there are advantages of being a reviewer and receiving a full CD is one of them, although I dare to say it’s rather rare that we receive the full package… You know, it makes me motivated to start writing a review and after a few notes I’m already glad that I put this one in my laptop. The eye catching front cover is another reason why I took this one at first out of the package Stefan send me… 

“At The Edge Of Reality” is the perfect start for this album, the first high pitched scream is heading my way and you know how much I adore them. This up tempo track is the kind of track every Heavy Metal fan should love! Good produced and heavy bouncing riffs, a Power Metal ravager from the very beginning! Right after this opening track we already get a break with an acoustic instrumental but Dark Mirror continues soon after with “Forever young” which contains a fantastic and addicting rhythm!  

Dark Mirror reminds me to some outstanding Metal bands. Halloween (USA), King Diamond, Metal Church, Twisted Tower Dire, Armored Saint, Ravensthorne, Attacker and the German Rawhead Rexx are crossing my mind. With “Through Oblivion” Dark Mirror shows that they are patriotic and mentioning the band pictures I notice that Dark Mirror tries to create the specific mood of patriotism. Dark Mirror let the music speak for itself and overall they don’t use many samples to create a dark atmosphere.   

Just as I finished writing these words “Asylum” takes off, starting with some dark sounding bells and some crows which are making their typical – yet threatening - sound… What a terrifying start of this song! Even more important is the fact that Dark Mirror creates a very sinister atmosphere by their music itself and let “Asylum” be the perfect example; what a mighty song!!! The further I go into this CD the more I find out that Dark Mirror did more than its best to create a special mood, “The Arrival….Unholy Crusade” is another good example and is by the way another fantastic Heavy Metal song! 

Alonso Donoso is responsible for the soaring vocals and I can easily imagine not every Metal fan adores this kind of singing. This man contains strong lungs, a high pitched voice and in some refrains he touches the highest notes, often in backing vocals. I just adore it although I dare to say his voice isn’t always that stable! His voice is on the one hand similar to other singers I know, on the other hand his timbre is kind of unique.  

In “Red carpet” we hear the more traditional Dark Mirror, with “Karma” I hear another superb track. What can’t be denied either is the fact this band also contains two awesome guitarists from which Blitz Creagan seems to be the shredder. One after another, fast fingered or emotional played guitar solo is heading my way. The ripping galloping riffs and the arrangements in general are making this album a US Power Metal top CD, capturing the sheer essence of the genre and improving it with the addition of Speed and Progressive Metal elements. The production is overall outstanding and Dark Mirror did a professional job with this release, let’s hope their hard work will be rewarded! 

Dark Mirror releases a very strong album with “Portrait Of Evil”. I’m sure that this band is capable to do much better and I presume their next one will release a true masterpiece. This band is able to write amazingly strong Heavy Metal songs in different subgenres. What I mean is that this band is capable of writing excellent Doom Metal, Power Metal, Heavy Metal, Thrash Metal… or in other words a very varied album! With the right spirit and in a perfect balanced (dark) atmosphere I believe strongly in the future of this band. Check this guys out at http://www.darmirror.com or http://www.myspace.com/darkmirror  

My Points: 87 / 100 (Review by Officer Nice)

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