Over the last four years, the GazettE have released more albums than singles but in turn, they have been able to experiment with their sound, allowing them to evaluate their approach to composing. To take it to the next level, they announced PROJECT: DARK AGE along with its six movements, the first one consisting of their eighth studio album DOGMA, accompanied with a new look that saw the band dressed from head to toe in black. There was silence for that point onward until a few months later when they revealed the lyric video for OMINOUS and a sampler of the album.
From the high-octane start, DERACINE takes things down a notch with its quiet intro that gradually building up the further into the song it gets. It comes up short though but that is not a bad thing as the lyrics really do stand out here along with the build up to the chorus, the chorus itself and the impressive placement of the growls.
Then there’s WASTELAND, a creepy, trance-like song that definitely lives up to its name as it gives off a sluggish, numb feeling, almost like the instrumentation and lyrics are portraying something dragging on without a conclusion. INCUBUS signals the return of the female vocals and comes across as one of the weaker songs on the album, failing to resonate or capture any attention, sounding similar to their heavier material in the past; the only redeeming factor is that it doesn’t feel out of place for once.
LUCY is one of their more sexually suggestive songs with a strong western influences and its easy to pick out, especially when vocals are sung a certain way, making this song work rather brilliantly, especially with the drum roll mid-song and the solo. GRUDGE involves the use of delay, becoming a pleasant addition during the verses and for once, every instrument clearly stands out but apart from that, there is nothing much to it.PARALYSIS checks in with attributes akin to INCUBUS however, the difference here is that everything comes across as a lot more fun and varied, especially when it hits the middle of the song where sound begins to change a little. At first, DEUX sounds like nothing special but once it hits the first verse and everything stops apart from the vocals, the magic begins; sending shivers down the spine and those moments do not stop there as it continues to hit these points of absolute gold during the chorus, the bridge and nearing the end.
BLEMISH enters with a drum roll alongside the sinister sounding guitars before it breaks down into growls and unleashes madness all over the place, managing to stay consistently fun after that as the vocals interchange between clean and screaming vocals, even to the extent their overlapping each other.
Before the end can come, the weird and wonderful OMINOUS, a feeling is created from the outset as the vocals sing over piano chords, a marching drum roll, backing track and acoustic guitars before everything can be amplified. The two solo’s in the song do well at separating each part but is also crucial to signifying the end, the end of something good.
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