Divinefire - Hero 3.5/5

Reviewed: 1-13-06





Tracklist:

1. Resurrection
2. Secret weapon
3. Divinefire
4. Hero
5. United as one
6. Leaving the shadows
7. Open your eyes
8. New beginning
9. Cryptic passages
10. The show must go on


Divinefire is a Christian power metal band featuring vocalist Christian Rivel of Narnia. I never warmed up much to Narnia, as I thought they were a little too light in the loafers for my tastes. Divinefire, however, is much more to my liking. They play very melodic, peppy power metal with a fairly heavy guitar tone which adds a bit to their overall intensity. Vocalist Rivel is excellent and sounds much better singing over the much stronger Divinefire material.

'Hero' starts off with an intro track "Resurrection". Unlike, oh just about every other power metal band's intro track, this is not a strictly instrumental track. In "Resurrection's" brief lyrics the Christian theme of the lyrics are made readily apparent. So, if you're adverse to or offended by lyrics like this, you may want to steer clear. For my money, I don't care if the lyrics are Christian, Satanic, Muslim, Hindu, Jewish, or Smelly Goat worshiping, as long as the songs are good. And, they're very good here. "Resurrection" leads to "Secret weapon" which immediately shows the band's style. It's a fast track with some backing keyboards giving a classical feel. Also, the heavier guitar tone is apparent which really makes Divinefire sound heavier than most bands of this style. They even manage to sprinkle some more "extreme" vocals in brief spots, but it's done so sparingly, that if you cringe at the thought, it shouldn't turn you off too much. Title-track, "Hero" is one of the stronger songs on the CD. Combining pretty melodies with some slightly dissonant, semi-technical riffs. There's plenty of speed too. Like most of Divinefire's songs, the choruses and riffs are very catchy. "United as one" is more of a slow paced anthem with some heavy riffs coupled with harmony guitars. The chorus is also catchy and should have even foul heathens like myself singing along. Good stuff!

Coming up with catchy, memorable songs is not an issue for Divinefire. There is also a good level of polish and classiness to the proceedings with a strong production and very solid musicianship. Rivel as noted, is a great vocalist, and I find him much more likable here than in Narnia. Hopefully, Divinefire will make a splash and become Rivel's focus. I will say, that while 'Hero' is a very strong CD, I may actually like their first CD 'Glory thy name' a little better. So, be sure to give both CDs a spin for some classy power metal.



JOHN




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