Droys - _And if..._
(Polymorphe, 1998)
by: Brian Meloon (8 out of 10)
Droys hail from France, and this is their second release, following 1995's _Experience_ MCD, which was released on the now defunct X-Label Records. Three of the four tracks from _Experience_ are on this release, though. Their style is technical thrash, in the vein of bands like Quo Vadis, Obliveon (_From This Day Forward_) and Sadus (_A Vision of Misery_, especially). Their vocalist has a slightly distorted shouting style, which reminds me of U.P.'s vocalist on _Mindfailure_. There are some clean vocals, but they are used sparingly. Although I find the vocals one of the weaker parts of the album, they don't make the music unlistenable. The songs are usually quite fast. Occasionally, the parts are very technical and experimental, but at others it's just straightforward thrash. They do some very nice melodic and acoustic interludes, which gives the album a fair amount of diversity. They also sprinkle melodic elements throughout the heavier sections. I particularly like the way the guitars harmonize complex parts, as well as the way they develop sections using harmonies. In general, the songs flow pretty well, although at times they cobble riffs together without a clear purpose. The playing is great on all counts, with the guitarists and bassist handling even the most difficult sections competently. Even the guitar solos are done well; they're appropriate and tasteful. The band is very tight, and the parts are difficult enough to make that quite a statement. The production could be a little better, as it's lacking in power. It's clean, but could be fuller and heavier. While I wouldn't call this album essential, it is a very good album, and is recommended for fans of technical thrash.

(article published 13/2/1999)

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