When I received this in my inbox the other day I didn’t know what to expect. Personally, I’ve never heard of the band but when I clicked the link to hear samples on their bandcamp page I was immediately blown away. Now that I sit listening to the full thing I couldn’t be happier that I opened that e-mail.
I’ll go ahead and assume many of you will also not have heard of this lot, so I’ve done a little research to shed some light on who they are. If you know the band, skip down a paragraph to reach the review. However if you don’t know them, stick around for this next paragraph to be briefly introduced to Mr Dimitriy Pavlovskiy.
Pavlovskiy, a guitarist who draws influence from artists ranging from Paganini and Bach to Annihilator and Stratovarius (that should give you a clue to the albums sound!), is a Ukrainian guitarist. He plays in a group by the name of Majesty Of Revival but in 2011 he recorded a solo instrumental album – PowerSquad. This release you’re reading about is the second solo record, this time under the name of Dimitriy Pavlovskiy’s PowerSquad, or DPs PowerSquad. Now that you’re caught up on who and what this is, lets get to grips with Dimitriy Pavlovskiy’s PowerSquad and their album, From The Glass Void.
As mentioned above, Pavlovskiy lists his influences from classical musicians, thrash giants and power metal gods so it’s no surprise to hear what type of music he has produced. There’s a strong neo-classical vibe running throughout with a heavy power metal leaning. The opening track (not counting the Prelude), The Light, gives us an excellent example of this. The classical sounding guitar melody juxtaposed against a heavy riff combined with power metal keys paints a picture of what’s to come.
What might take some by surprise though are the vocals. As they said, the first release, PowerSquad, was an instrumental effort but when track three, Shadows (a pretty mighty power metal affair to say the least), comes on some will be surprised to hear vocals. Oleksa Dynnyk’s voice compliments the music perfectly, when you have a guitarist as talented as Pavlovskiy, you want a vocalist to match this skill level. Dynnk’s vocals achieve this, his range and power suits the music to the ground.
Another positive with having a broad range of influences is that your music will also hopefully have a broad sound also. Many of the other bands that occupy similar territories of DP’s PowerSquad suffer from an onslaught of similar songs which strips the release of all tension and frankly drives the listener to boredom no matter how good the music is. Not here though; take for example R.A.D. This shorter song follows a seven minute track (GlassVoid). While GlassVoid is one of the tracks that mixes heaviness with power metal and classical, featuring slow haunting sections through to balls to the wall solos, R.A.D is just a straight ahead groove song (for the most part) with a tap your foot/nod your head riff accompanied with rawer vocals. It could be at home on a Grave Digger album.
Variety is the key and we get a good helping of it on this album. The upbeat swing of Joulupukinna to the angrier riff of GlassVoid. Vasiliy Irzhacks pounding drums through to his slow grooves, the fast full speed solos to the slower melodic licks, the clean piano of Ruslan Mikolyuk in the awesome Starry Sky to his keyboard orchestras, the instrumental songs like The Baroque to other songs that take us from high vocals to low vocals to female guest vocals (Nelly Haneal). This is the true highlight of this album, variety.
This is an album that keeps you interest from start to finish and that doesn’t seem a long time; it clocks in at around 35-40 minutes but feels so much shorter. If you don’t know Dimitriy Pavlovskiy’s PowerSquad, it’s time to get to know them. The album is released on the 13th September 2013. Head over to their bandcamp for more.