Album Review: Dakesis – Fractures (Self Released)
Dakesis are a four-piece Progressive Metal band from Birmingham, UK, with a reputation for electrifying showmanship, vast progressive storytelling and enough pomp and circumstance to bring a smile to even the dourest viewer.
Formed in 2008, with the release of a limited edition four-track E.P they soon set to work on their debut album ‘Trial By Fire’ which was released in 2011 to much critical acclaim.
2016’s sophomore album ‘The New Dawn’ saw more progressive influences developing and the addition of powerful orchestral backing alongside new session pianist Jacob Underwood, Dakesis have sculpted a vast instrumental soundscape to complement their heavier metal influences. With numerous headline tours under their belt, Dakesis are also frequent faces on the festival scene with performances at
Bloodstock Open Air twice (including headlining the Hobgoblin stage in 2017), HRH Metal, Dames of Darkness, Power Metal Quest Fest and many more.
The 28th of March 2020 sees the release of their third full-length album “Fractures”, and an even more progressive musical landscape. The album release will be celebrated with a hometown launch party at the iconic Asylum Venue in the home of heavy metal, Birmingham UK.
This feels like a big moment for Dakesis. They’ve been solidly and steadily building their reputation within the UK underground scene and now, with Fractures they are ready to burst out into the light and grab the attention of the mainstream. Simply put, it’s time to start paying attention to Dakesis as Fractures proves to be their finest work to date.
A strong and emotional symphonic opening in Eos sets the scene perfectly leading into Ends of Time Part 1 and Part 2. The first part delivers a vast and energetic slice of progressive heaviness. There’s a lot of meat to the bones of Dakesis’ sound. With bass lines that are thick and greasy, drums that serve up thumping slabs of noise, riffs that burn brightly in the mind, epic symphonic-style vocals and orchestral elements that add delightful layers to everything.
A commanding start, Part 2 doesn’t change that with a flurry of guitars to get the epic-ness going. Once it does settle and the vocals arrive, it transforms ever so slightly to become an incredibly catchy effort. The orchestral elements are outstanding here and it would be doing this incredible effort a dis-service if the thrilling guitar solo at the end wasn’t mentioned. This is the sort of music that pushes this band into the light for all to bear witness too.
Amazingly, we’re just getting started though as Overthrown delivers a bombastic metal medley and Kairos’ races along with the same high-powered energy Dakesis throw into everything.
Arguably the most ‘radio friendly’ track of the bunch, the thrilling catchiness of Surrender Your Fears is the epitome of an ‘ear-worm’ track. The middle-eastern vibes it gives off mixed with their modern progressive heavy sound is absolutely killer. The more you listen, the more nuances you notice and the more you find yourself loving it more and more.
How do you follow that? With arguably the most symphonic and pageantry-driven track of the bunch. That’s not a negative being aimed at Hold Forever, far from it as it delivers a splendid piece of music.
The end is in sight sadly but Dakesis certainly aren’t going out with a whimper with two final colossal efforts.
First up is Legacy in Memory, a softer, slower and keyboard driven track. A grand showcase of the vocals as everything else takes a backseat for the majority of the track.
Then to wrap up one of 2020’s best releases, Dakesis throw their all into a finale that will make you feel ten-feet tall. It’s hard not to overuse the word ‘epic’ but that is exactly what the title track is. The enormity of the guitars, the bass in particular, layered throughout like a thick vein. The vocals lifting the soul and turning dark thoughts lighter while a slightly fractured rhythm keeps things perfectly on edge.
Fractures is a wonderful release and should go down in history as the moment Dakesis rose up to become giants of the scene.
Dakesis – Fractures Full Track Listing:
2. Ends of Time Part 1
3. Ends of Time Part 2
6. Surrender Your Fears
7. Hold Forever
8. Legacy in Memory
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Dakesis – Fractures (Self Released)
The Final Score - 10/10