Diphtheria - _To Wait for Fire_
(Pitch Black Records, 2008)
by: Quentin Kalis (7 out of 10)
To judge from the hyperbolic exhortations in the booklet, they are Lucifer's nonpareil gift to the Cypriot metal scene, but this puffery serves only to heighten expectations to the point that they cannot be met. _To Wait for Fire_ is not horrible in any sense, but neither is it an undiscovered treasure yet to be exposed to metalheads outside the Mediterranean.

They perform classic metal -- with nary a shred of death metal despite the moniker -- and both the vocalist and musicians are more than competent in their Iron Maiden and Fates Warning inspired odes, especially the interplay between the twin guitarists. They stay within the mid-tempo range, almost always with an underlying melancholy. Also included are two bonus tracks re-mastered from the original demos, which have a rawer feel than the newer material, but are good enough for the relegation to bonus status to be an insult -- even if they do utilise stale stunts beloved by bands in the nascent stages of their career, such as spoken word samples. As mentioned earlier, it is a pleasing if not stunning entrant to heavy metal, and several albums later, they may just become Cyprus' premiere metal band, but if this is the best Cyprus has to offer at the moment, then Diphtheria are the proverbial big fish in a small pond.

Contact: http://www.diphtheria.net

(article published 30/9/2008)

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