Dionysus - Anima mundi 4/5

Reviewed: 3-18-05


1. Divine
2. Bringer of war
3. Anima mundi
4. My heart is crying
5. March for freedom
6. What
7. Eyes of the world
8. Forever more
9. Paradise land
10. Closer to the sun (bonus track)
11. Holy war (bonus track)

Dionysus is the excellent band made up of Olaf Hayer, who is well known for singing on the excellent Luca Turilli (Rhapsody) solo CDs. He is also slightly less well known for singing on the underrated Christian metal tribute Treasure Seeker CD. 'Anima mundi' is the 2nd CD by Dinoysus and is an all-around improvement over their solid debut, 'Sign of truth'. Dionysus' style falls somewhere between that of the Italian and German melodic power metal bands. Lots of catchy choruses are in abundance. Dionysus oozes an extra class due to the quality songwriting and high level of musicanship that permeates this CD.

The CD opens with “Divine” which features some infectious interplay between keyboard and guitar in the song's signature riff. “Bringer of war” really stands apart from the other tracks as it is possibly the CD's heaviest song, and doesn't have the pretty melodies that most of the other songs have. In fact, all you would need is Dirk Thurisch on vocals and this song would fit in just fine on Angel Dust's opus 'Bleed'. The CD's title track returns things to normal with a double bass assault and tons of pretty, catchy melodies. “March for freedom” stands out as a very solid midtempo anthem with a memorable chorus. “Eyes of the world” is probably my favorite track, with its catchy guitar and vocal melodies.

As a nice addition, this CD has a bonus track, a demo recording of "Holy war", probably the best song from the band's debut. Nothing really special in this version, but it's cool to hear another version of perhaps the band's best song. This CD may not be for those who shun the pretty melodies in their metal, and it certainly doesn't redefine the genre or stand too far apart from its peers in the oversaturated power metal market. But, it does stand out as one of the upper echelon CDs in the genre, and is one of my favorites from 2004.




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