Derdian – Human Reset
Release Date: July 23, 2014
Italian power metal six-piece Derdian have triumphantly returned to the metal world with their fifth full length album, Human Reset, which follows up 2013’s Limbo. Derdian is a seamless blend of symphonic elements (obviously influenced by Rhapsody of Fire) with galloping traditional power metal melodies pushed forth through amazing keyboard and guitar leads, drum and bass runs, and soaring clean vocals. Relatively new to Derdian, Ivan Giannini joined in 2012, with Limbo being his first appearance on record fronting the band. While the band’s lineup has been far from stable over the years, every album seems to have grown impressively in songwriting and musicianship from the previous one. This would lead us to believe that Human Reset would be their most promising release yet, and they absolutely did not disappoint.
After a brief intro track of beautifully dark, brassy symphonic touches, title track “Human Reset” begins with a literal bang and layered vocal verse. Relentlessly catchy, and beautifully moving, the song really sets a nice tone for the rest of the record. Enter “In Everything” which begins with some impressive classical lead guitar work, solid drumming, and moving keyboard elements. This song is another strong example of a wonderful blend of catchy instrumentation and vocal patterns, especially into the chorus. At a little over six minutes long, this song really holds your attention from start to finish. Towards the end of the track is this beautiful instrumental piece with more lead guitar and keyboard work. If I had a complaint to make about this song (a complaint that I make a lot) it is that I can’t hear the bass well enough. I can hear there is a great accompaniment going on back there, but I would really like to hear it more!
“Absolute Power” and “Write Your Epitaph” seem to be where the album takes a slightly darker turn. The eerie harmonies between rhythm and lead guitars and keys are phenomenal, and when the vocals come in I really couldn’t ask for more perfect songs. The last three songs of the album are another section of absolute perfection. “Alone” is definitely the least symphonic driven song on the album, showcasing the band’s raw heavy metal ability, which is truly just as great as the more symphonic sounding tracks. The rhythm guitar work is driving and relentless, emphasized wonderfully by great drumming and bass work. As the song progresses through it’s over seven minutes, the symphonic elements return but the original drive is still there pushing it along well into the brief instrumental, “Delirium”.
The album closes on a great track, “My Life Back”, which begins as this slow and mellow, yet beautifully haunting piece. Don’t get used to it for long, as when the full band enters it is definitely the strongest, and biggest sounding song on the album. I feel as if this track should go on for 20 minutes, because I could listen to it for far longer than it lasts. The piano at the end is stunningly beautiful and closes the album perfectly.
Derdian, using these creative vocal patterns and layers, on top of all of this beautifully arranged music, truly sets themselves apart from any other traditional power metal band out there today. They are taking what we’ve heard many bands attempt in the past, symphonic metal, and executing it the way it deserves to be done. Every second of this album is full of perfect power metal, speed metal, and symphonic elements, never once being repetitive or expected. It is absolutely shocking that the band hasn’t found a solid, steady label to pick them up and get them out there even further. Although the music is good enough to speak for itself, the band could definitely go far if the right audience was reached. That is where we come in! Check out the album, support the band, and cheers to you Derdian for this amazing release!