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Diabolical Masquerade - Nightwork CD (album) cover


Diabolical Masquerade


Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

4.01 | 22 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
4 stars DIABOLICAL MASQUERADE is the solo project of Anders Nystrom (aka Blakkheim), known for his work as the guitarist of Katatonia. Although he is often cited as the sole performer on this side project he in fact had help from a few friends. Most notably Dan Swano from Edge of Sanity plays drums and other percussion, additional keyboards, backing vocals and is the the co-producer. Blakkheim handles the vocals, guitars, bass and keyboards. Others handle the cello and flute.

This album takes you on a stroll through the entire metal universe as it is based in old school black metal with the deranged monster vocals but much of the album also has symphonic embellishments. There are thrash metal leanings with galloping riffs, groove metal sections, traditional metal acoustic arpeggios and soloing and progressive time signatures with tons of keyboards and strange inserted extras including spoken words sounding like they are from Satan himself.

The ghostly atmospheric backings give this a really disquieting effect. The sound effects add strangeness such as a scratchy old record lp effect on 'The Zkeleton Keyz To The Dead' or avant-garde vocalizations that pop out of nowhere every so often. The formula does remind a bit of Mr Bungle or Sigh in that the styles play for a while and then shift suddenly, however, DM has a smaller palette than the aforementioned groups tending to stick to using the metal genres with only meager sprinklings of non-metal influences which places this firmly in metal territory but because these metal subgenres are usually not sewn together in such a way, also gives this album a uniqueness that I have not heard anywhere else. Cool stuff.

siLLy puPPy | 4/5 |


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