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Daal - Dodecahedron CD (album) cover




Eclectic Prog

4.07 | 276 ratings

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Cesar Inca
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Daal brings a new reason for progressive celebration: the new album "Dodecahedron", which is a brilliant successor to the equally impressive "Destruktive Actions Affect Livings" (Daal's effort from last year), but the new release bears a darker mood in more consistent way, a thing that makes sense with its compositional structure as a concept-disc about fear, nightmares, psychological traumas, etc. this album not only flaunts a whole arsenal of keyboards, synthesizers, acoustic and electronic percussions and sundry effects as the Costa-Guidoni duo usually does, but there is also a very proficient number of collaborators on guitars, woodwinds, bass, contrabass, and a lot more. This results in a very calibrated set of arrangements and ornament that both enhance the basic melodic schemes for each peace and expand on nuances that are potentially waiting to be explored. Now, let's focus on the repertoire itself. Getting started with a powerful exotic ambiance, 'Part I' starts the album with a vibrant exhibition of rocking exquisiteness that easily sets itself on a solid mid-tempo. The combination of clever synth layers and catchy guitar riffs prove quite effective. The epilogue displays a mysterious classical guitar motif that serves as a bridge to 'Part II', whose ethereal vibe is properly adequate to fit the mixture of Far East textures and Floydian atmospheres on which the main theme is based. On the other hand, the spirit of 'Part III' bears a denser feel, something like Goblin-meets-early White Willow. The last 2 minutes find the track incorporating symphonic elements to its framework, which work as an enhancer of the sense of doom that had marked the main theme. 'Part IV' reinstates the dominance of subtlety, this time with a jazzy orientation that occasionally is ornamented with psychedelic variations: the presence of the violin-cello duet guarantees the persistence of melodic clarity throughout the track's very core. 'Part V' is, in itself, a well balanced combination of standard space-rock and Arabic-centered fusion: the slow nature of the basic rhythmic scheme helps to preserve an air of suspense without altering a single particule of the track's dominant contemplative essence. Once again, the track ends on an epilogue played on classical guitar that paves the way to the next track, this time, 'Part VI'. This track sustains a heavy presence of Tangerine Dream-influenced eerie krautrock (circa 75- 78), with a coda that eventually turns things toward Yessian territory (in a magnificent way that reminds us of the "Tales"-era). 'Part VII' is full of candid lyricism while 'Part VIII' states a vibrant mixture of space-rock and jazz-rock where the cosmic textures of the main theme is explored in a very groovy fashion. Although this piece is perfectly valid on the basis of its own individual qualities, it can also be appreciated as a preparation for the rocking zenith encapsulated in 'Part IX'. The syncopated dynamics that rules the rhythmic pace enables the build-up of a catchy swing in the central theme. 'Part X' rides on a different arena, one that is based on influences from Shadowfax and Yellow Jackets. 'Part XI' definitely sounds like a close cousin to 'Part IV', TD-ish really, with a touch of "Anctartica"-era Vangelis? and pertinent colors delivered by the guests in charge of the violin-cello duet. 'Part XII' closes down the album in a very fulfilling symphonic fashion (Camel, 697-0 King Crimson, BMS) with evident touches of more contemporary trends (White Willow, Höstsonaten). There are also hints to some dark elements that had been present in previous tracks. This is, all in all, "Dodecahedron", a great achievement by Daal, a very recommended item in your contemporary prog rock collection.
Cesar Inca | 4/5 |


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