Dagoba - _Face the Colossus_
(Season of Mist, 2008)
by: Jeremy Ulrey (7 out of 10)
Dagoba is a quizzical beast, a French one at that, treading with each album closer to mainstream US metal, a predictable amalgam of Fear Factory, Slipknot, and just enough epic keyboard to vaguely recall Nightwish or, having it both ways, hint at slick black metal influences; yet they choose to drag out their songs to interminable lengths which would tend to stymie any hope at true commercial assimilation. The cover art for _Face the Colossus_, featuring a super sized, chtonian creature whose limbs and general ergonomics don't quite square up with plausible physics, seems to serve no purpose but to further throw the impulse buyer off the scent, as the horror elements hint at death or power metal, a far cry from the music within.

Courtesy of producer Tue Madsen, _FtC_ can hang sonically with anything on the Roadrunner label, the font from which nearly all of Dagoba's musical influences seem to spring. They've got all the usual dichotomies covered: epic yet melodic ("Face the Colossus"), morose yet brutal in turns ("Silence #3"), complex yet catchy ("Somebody Died Tonight")... as well done as a complete package it is, there's something undeniably calculated about it all. Shawter dutifully alternates vocal delivery a la the tenor of the times, hitting the familiar Burton C. Bell (Fear Factory) notes and the typical Pantera / Machine Head metalcore bellow. Franky Costanza makes sure to fill his quota of kick drum rolls. And those ever present keyboards (Shawter again) are always there to remind us of the supposedly epic scale of what we're listening to. Nonetheless, if the Roadrunner stable floats your boat, you'll probably wonder where these garçons have been hiding themselves.

Contact: http://www.dagobaonline.com/

(article published 23/1/2009)

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