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Delain - 'The Human Contradiction' http://www.rocktopia.co.uk/media/reviews/photos/thumbnail/200x200s/31/b6/9c/delain-the-human-contradiction-97-1400696348.jpg Hot

Added by Central Electronic Brain     May 21, 2014    
 
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A sensational release.

I hate repeating myself, but it's only fair for the benefit of new readers that I again disclose that I have been a passionate supporter of Delain since the early days and I maybe their biggest fan in the Fireworks / Rocktopia team. Although I was exceedingly enthusiastic when 'The Human Contradiction' arrived, I decided to show some rare resolve and save it for when I could fully savour it. So was the self-imposed wait worthwhile...oh yes!

I'll admit that the first play didn't leave me the gushing wreck that I had been after my first exposure to 'We Are The Others'. It was obviously a superb release but the dark and heavier sound made it feel less instantaneously absorbable. However by the end of the second listen, this too had managed to move me to an equally thrilled state. Lyrically '...Contradiction' is even deeper than its predecessor and expands on the "otherness" theme with subjects like conforming to societies standards, plastic surgery and mans relationship to animals. Musically, this release includes representation, elements and sound that can be heard on all their previous albums, more so than was found on '...Others'.

This is most obvious with the return of two previous guests in Marco Hietala (Nightwish – from 'Lucidity'/'April Rain') and George Oosthoek (Orphanage – from 'Lucidity'). Hietala adds his unmistakable vocals to the punchy 'Your Body Is A Battleground' and the wonderful 'Sing To Me' whilst Oosthoek's contribution to the varied 'Tell Me Mechanist' sees brutal grunts reappearing in the Delain mix. There's also a new guest in Alissa White-Gluz (Arch Enemy) who provides both clean vocals and her trademark screams to the epic closer 'The Tragedy Of The Commons'. These are all great tracks but I honestly don't have any favourites amongst the nine songs because the likes of 'My Masquerade' with its Gothic edge and the groovy 'Army Of Dolls' are every bit as captivating.

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I could write masses on each track but there simply isn't the space. Instead I will leave it for you to discover this Symphonic feast yourself; its overflowing with thumping riffs, thunderous rhythms and bombastic choruses that's all topped off with Charlotte Wessels awesome vocals.

Many of Symphonic Metal's biggest acts have released albums recently and almost every one of them has been that bands best work to date. I am ecstatic to say that Delain not only continues that trend, but to my ears, is the best of the lot and an early favourite for my "2014 Top Album". As an ardent Delain enthusiast I am thrilled to say that 'The Human Contradiction' is a sensational release and one that I feel other Symphonic enthusiasts (and many music lovers in general) will equally adore.

Dave Scott

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