Archive for DBA

Dead By April – Let The World Know

Posted in Alternative, CD, Metal with tags , , , on 21st March 2014 by Pieni

Dead By April
“Let The World Know”
Pop metal
Released on 12th February 2014
Via Universal Music

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I’ve always had a WTF feeling whenever hearing something new from Dead By April, ever since the very first time I’ve listened to “Losing You” back in late 2008/early 2009. But then the songs would find their way through my ears and stick around, to the point where I would admit I liked them. Not this time. Actually, not since “Mystery”, the song they’ve tried taking to Eurovision Song Contest 2012.

“Let The World Know” is out for over a month now, I’ve listened to it several times, and the WTF feeling still lingers, meaning that, to me, this isn’t a good album. I should have guessed since I didn’t have any reaction, good or bad, to the first songs released to the public (“Freeze Frame”, “Empathy” and “As A Butterfly”). They sounded too average and nothing that they haven’t done before. As a friend of mine said,DBA is a band that covers itself”. And when “As A Butterfly” ends up being one of the best songs in the album after all, along with “Beautiful Nightmare”, that’s pretty bad.

When I reviewed “Incomparable”, I said that they had stretched the term “pop metal” to its limits, the pop being poppier and the heavy being heavier. The problem with “Let The World Know” is that the pop embraced its dance variety and the heavy is like a ghost – translucent and unnatural. Take “Done With Broken Hearts”, for instance. When Stoffe starts screaming is so abrupt, so out of place, that it feels like it’s just an excuse for them to keep using the word “metal” and not how the song really should have turned out (by the way, peeps, harsh/growling vocals isn’t enough to brand something as metal). And “Abnormal” will make you feel like you’ve just stepped into a rave party! Pop metal, okay, that’s actually interesting. Pop dance metal, now that’s way out of line.

I won’t give up on them just yet, but “Let The World Know” won’t be part of any playlist of mine.

2 / 5

by Renata “Pieni” Lino

Dead By April w/ support – Gothenburg, Sweden

Posted in Gig, Live with tags , , , , , , , , , , on 20th February 2014 by Pieni

Dead By April, Seventribe, The End Of Grace
Sticky Fingers/Klubb Defused, Gothenburg
14th February 2014

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With the release of their third full-length album, Dead By April threw a release party – read “concert” – in one of the most famous venues in their hometown. The End Of Grace and Seventribe had already announced a gig there on the same date, although on a different stage (Sticky Fingers has a middle and a top floor stage), so I guess having those two bands as support was a matter of chance, not a plan. Personally, I was more than happy with that line-up.

Despite merging the events, The End Of Grace and Seventribe still performed in the middle floor (Klubb Defused), which was wise. Let’s face it – no matter how amazing they both are, it was DBA’s night and the majority of their pop-metal fans isn’t exactly keen on fierce metalcore. So it’s better to play on a smaller stage in a smaller room that will fill up easily, than in a bigger stage where the room would be almost empty.

Being the younger band (they were formed in late 2012), TEoG played first. They’ve been gathering a solid fan base – me included – since the very beginning and especially after the release of the “Lost In Transition” EP, so there was a considerable number of people singing along the choruses. The rest of the crowd seemed to surrender to the band’s sound and vigour, as when I looked around, everyone was either headbanging or smiling approvingly.
They played the aforementioned 5-track EP, kicking off with “Betrayer” and ending with the title-track, and in-between presented us with a new song which will be released as single on 28th February – punchy riffing and with a catchier-than-ever chorus, “Beneath The Waves” has everything to be a hit.
As in their first live gig, at Rockbitch Boat last November, Sebastian from Bataar got on stage to sing the Swedish verses in “Fist Face Bleed” – and spike the people in the front row with a beer shower… Speaking of that first show, TEoG have only played two more between that and this one but you could see a major difference in their self-confidence. I know that despite the Plexiglas cage in which the drum kit was set, this stage was still bigger and allowed them to move around, which didn’t happen at Rockbitch Boat. But it was more than that. Their performance was thicker, more intense. And even though there wasn’t a killer mosh pit, the response was great, which must have had a special meaning to singer Kriss, as he’s been working as a promoter there at Klubb Defused for over a year. [5 / 5]

www.facebook.com/TheEndOfGrace

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I was glad of finally having the chance to see Seventribe live. I’m a subscriber of Sweden Rock Magazine, and when they won the Released, Live and Unsigned contest and got to play at Sweden Rock Festival 2011, the single “Dream Me” came with the magazine and completely won me over. But that was it – I totally lost track of them afterwards. Well that won’t happen again.
I’d seen live videos of them, but even if I hadn’t, when a metalcore band gets on stage wearing some kind of school Summer uniform where the shirt is pink, you just know that something wicked is coming your way. Even if someone is missing. Seventribe is an eight-piece but I only counted seven members. I don’t know what happened, and I hope one day I can see the full line-up in action, but maybe it was for the best – things were pretty crammed up there already. Still, they managed to jump and headbang and dance and whatever, without bumping into each other or missing a note. Eventually, near the end, two of them hopped into the middle of the crowd and played from there.
As I’ve said before, I’d lost track of them and only when I learnt they would play a couple of shows with The End Of Grace did I remember of checking what they’ve been up to since that single on Sweden Rock. Well, a new EP, “Reborn”, had been released last year, and even if I really enjoyed it, I confess I didn’t memorize the songs, except for “Be Reborn”. I can tell you for sure that they played that one, as I was humming along the melody, but can’t tell you much more about the setlist (apart from the mandatory “Dream Me”). There’s a video for “Takedown Syndrome” and a recent lyric one for “The Aftermath”, and “Wings Of Belief” is their most played song on Spotify, so maybe these were some of the songs played that night. Whatever those were, they were loud, aggressive, a total adrenaline discharge. [5 / 5]

www.facebook.com/seventribe

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As expected, the top floor of Sticky Fingers was crowded. I tried to get close to the stage but quickly gave up – the first three or four rows were already packed with eager fans. So if I was disappointed when Dead By April didn’t play more than 45 minutes, I can only imagine how those fans must have felt. But at the same time… to say I’m unimpressed with “Let The World Know” is quite an understatement. That’s why I haven’t written the review about it yet, as it’s taking me quite a while to process it and find the right words in order to be fair. It’s not that it’s a terrible album, but… Let’s just say I was glad that this release party didn’t include the entire track-list and that old songs such as “Losing You” or “Within My Heart” were strategically played here and there.
This was also the first full show of Marcus Rosell as the new drummer. Marcus has played with DBA several times in the past, as a stand-in drummer for Alex Svenningsson whenever he needed to step out of some gig. But now that Alex has left for good, it was only natural that Marcus’ role would become permanent. So natural that there wasn’t even an official announcement. It took the video for “As A Butterfly”, where Marcus is featured, for the fans to realize the new line-up change. Alex would recently confirm his departure on his own Facebook page, but since main songwriter Pontus Hjelm is still on board and Marcus’ face is already familiar to the fans anyway, there shouldn’t be any fuss about this.
The intro of “Beautiful Nightmare”, the first track in the new album, echoed and thrilled screams followed suit. Truth be told – even if I’m still struggling with the new songs, DBA are all about emotions and put their full hearts in their performance and establish an empathy (no pun intended regarding their song with the same name) with the audience, which are essential features in a great live show. And that’s what this was – short but great. [4,5 / 5]

www.facebook.com/deadbyapril

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Text & photos by Renata “Pieni” Lino