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In my quest to discover fairly unknown bands, I've also stumbled across this little gem from Austria. One of the few melodic metal acts from the small alpine republic, Dignity are a group formed around drummer Roland Navratil, formerly of fellow Austrians Edenbridge, and keyboarder and producer Frank Pitters, feautring none other than Jake E. of Dreamland and Amaranthe fame on vocals on their first album "Project Destiny".
The album, which was released in 2008, comprises 9 tracks that look to find their own destiny somewhere in the nether realms between melodic metal and rock, spiced up with a select few progressive elements. The production is very clear and transparent, however it lacks a little punch from time to time, and Jake E.'s vocals could use a little more power behind them as well. However, what is left is still a somewhat enjoyable record. The opener and title track has a catchy chorus to offer, however it is the following "Arrogance and Rapture" that's truly the standout track of the album, with its driving riff by guitarist Martin and beautifully woven melodies. Another, more metal-esque highlight is "Icarus" with pounding double bass from the drums, and a broad chorus that invites to sing along.
Dignity also included a few funny references in their debut offering, such as a short musical quote of the legendary guitar solo from the popular TV show of the 80ies, "Saber Rider". And it's little wonder - Dignity's sound itself sounds a bit like it belongs in the 80ies, too. Sometimes the keyboard sounds are a little too cheesy and dominant for my taste, and the whole album could use a little more meat to it: nine tracks, one of which is a cover of Chris DeBurgh's "Don't pay the Ferryman" is almost a bit meager for a full-length album.
Nonetheless, "Project Destiny" should satisfy lovers of melodic metal and rock alike, if they are searching for a new discovery on the market. It's a strong sign of life, especially for a debut album, and it leads you to think about what will happen to this band as they continue to evolve and produce new material. I for one am definitely looking forward to a successor to "Project Destiny".
‘Project Destiny’ is Dignity’s first full-length release. Formed in 2006, the band plays a soothing hybrid of power metal and hard rock with optimistic imagery and melodic soundscapes. Although the band is a new addition to the metal scene, they have a wealth of experience with ex-Edenbridge drummer Roland Navratil filling up their ranks.
With hard rock paired with power metal, there is a large mire of opportunity at the band's dispense here. The most well-known band to attempt such a one-two punch is Germany's Edguy with their Rocket Ride release. Dignity's approach fortunately is substantially varied from Edguy's.
Like most power metal releases, the term ‘epic’ can be justifiably applied to this album with galloping guitars on ‘Dreams Never Die’, keys akin to symphonic metal on ‘Icarus’ and reverie-style musings on the title track. One of the most unique attributes on this album is the off-beat and unpredictable drumming on ‘Arrogance and Rapture’ that helps draw the band away from the quagmire of modern power metal.
The downside to this album is the drought of fresh ideas that follow. The opening number is cute and memorable but a few songs later, the listener knows precisely what to expect: typical power metal with heavier elements paying homage to hard rock. The second part of this album is largely insipid and this Swedish/Austrian group will have to dig deeper if they are serious about turning heads with this new project.
Originally written for www.soundshock.net
Behind this new band hides an old acquaintance of ours, the former drummer of Edenbridge Roland Navratil who, separated from the Austrian band, decided to start this new musical adventure.
The sound goals they are pursuing are those of a melodic hard rock that is outbalanced towards the neoclassical heavy and that does not go too close to the past of the former band of Roland. In common with Edenbridge they have just the taste for the baroque arrangements, for the orchestrations and long suites, but honestly they are characters that many bands behold and that do not justify a particular comparison.
For the rest it's the structure of the verses and the construction of the vocal parts to address the band towards the symphonic rock of Royal Hunt, also for the distortion effect and for the riffing, without forgetting the pomp edges that are given by some keyboard arrangement and by some close vocal structure to Queen. As it's usual in the present musical panorama, the adopted solutions to hit the heart of the new millennium melodic metallers is the following: majestic refined instrumental scores on one side, airy resounding melodies on the other.
And then if you find a singer like Swedish Jake E., able to climb onto the peak always remaining clean and warm, the job is done. A job that may seem easy, but only when you have a band like Dignity at work.