- Shield Of Achilles
- Trial By Fire
- After The Storm
- On Wings Of Steel
- Into The Light
- To The End
- Shield Of Achilles 2
- 440 (King Of The Road)
Trial By Fire is the debut album from Dakesis who consist of Wayne Dorman (vocals & guitar)¸ Gemma Lawler (vocals¸ bass & keyboards)¸ Amie Chatterley (vocals¸ bass & keyboards) Matt Jones (guitar) and Adam Harris (drums). If ever there was a band possessing of a stubborn refusal to take themselves too seriously it is Dakesis. You only need to watch the album recording blogs for an illustration of this; perhaps most notably of them all was the “phone wars” between Adam Harris and the rest of the band.
Moving onto the music first impressions from the album cover is reflective of the band name itself which is derived from the ancient Greek word for illusion. It’s not really that much of a stretch to tie this in with a warrior woman approaching a castle which both the design and track titles with such names as Shield of Achilles and Valhalla illustrate.
They have mentioned in the past that one of the main reasons for their existence is the influence of Finland’s Thunderstone. It takes less than two minutes of watching a Thunderstone video on youtube to see where this is drawn from as comparisons are as plain as day musically. However it seems from the outset of Shield of Achilles that another influence is Iron Maiden which ironically doesn’t appear on the list of personal preferences which stretches from Children of Bodom to Saboton.
After the short instrumental introduction of Shield Of Achilles 1 which gives the musicians a chance to introduce themselves the album moves into Trial by Fire which puts this reviewer in mind of such 1980’s metal as Iron Maiden’s The Trooper which of course Dakesis have been known to cover.
Anyone who has seen Dakesis live will know of their trademark versatility and this first emerges in Liar where Wayne Dorman and Gemma Lawler interchanging vocals throughout the album which to my ears are at their best in After The Storm¸ Broken and To The End. Present on the album are the quartet of songs which existed on the EP of Trial by Fire¸ Broken¸ Valhalla and 440 (King of the Road). When asked about this Gemma Lawler stated¸ “We consider Trial by Fire¸ Valhalla and Broken to be signature tracks of the band¸ and are aware that they are fan favourites¸ if these songs have to live forever as a representation of what we are about¸ then we wanted them to be the very best they could be”. In this¸ as well as the new songs featured¸ it would seem that Dakesis have succeeded with a near flawless product.
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