Diabulus In Musica - Argia

13 songs
56:35 minutes
***** ***


Diabulus In Musica is a Spanish symphonic metal band that has been around since 2006, and since then has released one EP and three CDs. The four men and one woman became popular after their second album The Wanderer, and the following Argia is able to defend that status, unlike the Spanish football team during this year’s FIFA World Cup.

One could blame the band of being too inspired by Theatre Of Tragedy, but there are a sufficient number of other ideas to discern them, like the soprano vocals, the violin and the choirs. The dual vocals consisting of a clear female voice and less present male growls may also not be something new, but the arrangements work well enough to make it all work.

The three minute intro is definitely too long for its own good. The following up-tempo song From The Embers conciliates though as a perfect example of how to create extremely exciting symphonic metal. The sound is emphasised by a powerful yet clear production which furthermore underlines the band’s potential. Inner Force is another punching track with a totally convincing operetta vocal part. Furia De Libertad is a slower track with some folk moments, and the only one with Spanish lyrics. More mellowness follows with the semi-ballad Maitagarri which stands out due to its flute parts and its really dramatic ending. The band is able to switch skilfully between slow and faster parts. The quiet moments often come with a folk touch, whereas the faster ones rely on drama and pathos, so that there is never a lack of suspense. I especially like the martial sounding Spoilt Vampire. A little more commercial, but definitely not bad, is the final regular track Healing, which might be with its six minutes too long for radio stations but apart from that has all it takes to make the band big. The only weak song is Eternal Breeze which sounds too much like an unnecessary tribute to Nightwish.

Apart from that one flaw, the intro and the outro, we still get ten wonderfully structured and varied songs that will entertain perfectly for three quarters of an hour. I have no qualms to count Diabulus In Musica among the essential symphonic metal bands. Some may consider this as kitsch or cliché, but I prefer the terms art. I definitely enjoyed this journey into the fantasy world of the Spanish quintet.

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