Progarchives, the progressive rock ultimate discography
Daal - Dances Of The Drastic Navels CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

4.02 | 207 ratings

From, the ultimate progressive rock music website

siLLy puPPy
4 stars After the fruitful years of 2012 when DAAL released not only a full album but also an EP they took a couple years to hone the latest chapter of their musical world into DANCES OF THE DRASTIC NAVELS. The past several years has seen the duo of DA-vide Guidoni and AL-fio Costa (with guest musicians) make some waves in the progressive music universe and on this 2014 release they continue their propensity to follow in the wake of space rock giants Pink Floyd mixed with healthy doses of Klaus Schulze type progressive electronica.

While most DAAL albums take their sweet time to usher in the more energetic phases of a track, the opener "Malleus Maleficarum" has none of that predictability. We get some energetic rock kickin' the album off from the start with keyboards adding the mood building touch that eventually slows down to include a spooky theremin sound settling in a dark and chilling mood. The music continues its ebb and flow of spacey mellow passages and rockin' outbursts with piano accompanied by a guitar solo but about the 4:40 mark changes back into a spacey progressive electronic segment reminding once again of "Dark Side Of The Moon." This pattern continues building segments and climaxing and then abruptly transitioning into something new. DAAL have become very good at this Frankenstein approach of sonic seamstressy and keeps it all feeling very natural.

The second track "Elektra" takes the opposite approach and begins with a more expected slow spacey build up eventually being accompanied by some energetic tribal drumming and slow synth run offering contrast. It turns into a fun bounciness in proggy time signatures that lasts for over seven minutes but offers up enough variety to keep the whole thing interesting.

Another propensity DAAL has mastered is the melodramatic piano riffs as heard on the third track "Lilith" that wouldn't sound out of place as a TV soap opera theme bringing the US soap "The Young And The Restless" to mind. Some may find this a bit cheesy but i find the sweet and syrupy riff actually works well once all the counterpoints are added to expand its melodic possibilities into different directions. The slow addition of layers of instruments brings a veritable post rock feel to many of the tracks on DANCES OF THE NAVELS with "Lilith" being at the shortest track that lasts just long enough before becoming stale.

The longest and most varied behemoth on this album is the title track and begins with a steam train kinda chugga chugga rhythm overlaid with an unrelated vocal track and spacey synth line. Kinda has a Faust feel as it brings a collage type effect into play. All the disjointed and unrelated parts exude a strange tension that makes one ponder what's ready to unleash at any moment. Finally we get "Dark Side" Floydian bass accompanied by some tinkling piano and then adds some serious rock guitar. At 23:50 the track takes plenty of time to develop a plethora of passages that tend to alternate more the subdued mellowness to establish and re- establish the hooks while the harder sounds tend to allow the music to drift more into chaos before being jolted back to the main melodramatic piano again. Once again the post rock formula is well exhibited with building tensions constantly exploiting new layers of sounds like a violin segment that really brings acts like Godspeed! You Black Emperor To Mind."

Unfortunately i find DAAL's albums to be excellent but there always seems to be a song that rubs me the wrong way. In this case it's the finale "Inside You" which seems a little too tame to be in the company of such progressive beasts. Not that it's a bad song or anything but it just isn't a great one either and although i can understand the intent for it to be a sanity check after such frenetic instrumental prowess, i just find it is lackluster and skippable.

There is a feeling at this point that DAAL may be rehashing their sounds a bit and that they might be in danger of becoming stagnate as there really isn't a lot to distinguish this album from the others but the arrangements are interesting and DAAL has really tapped into some fusion possibilities that haven't been developed to this extent. Except for the last track i find this music to be captivating and thoroughly intriguing. I do hope they find a way to up the ante on future releases but at this stage i don't feel they've thoroughly exhausted the compositional possibilities of the style they have created. An excellent album filled with DAAL-lisciousness but falls a bit short from being a masterpiece.

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |


As a registered member (register here if not), you can post rating/reviews (& edit later), comments reviews and submit new albums.

You are not logged, please complete authentication before continuing (use forum credentials).

Forum user
Forum password

Share this DAAL review

Social review comments () BETA

Review related links

Copyright Prog Archives, All rights reserved. | Legal Notice | Privacy Policy | Advertise | RSS + syndications

Other sites in the MAC network: — jazz music reviews and archives | — metal music reviews and archives