December 7, 2023

It is very appropriate that two of Italy’s leading progressive metal bands should release their latest albums in the same month which means that we have a feast of rock to revel in as DGM join Secret Sphere in putting out another hard rock masterpiece.

DGM came together in 1994 and I actually spent my hard-earned money buying the debut album Change Direction in 1998 and 25-years later I still have a great love for the band. For sure, the debut showed a band with much to learn but each new release has seen them take huge steps forward so that what we now have is very much the finished article!

The band name is taken from the initials of the three founding members in Diego Reali, Gianfranco Tassella and Maurizio Pariotti although it is true that the band no longer has any original musicians but all who have come through the DGM revolving door have remained true to the principles of the band laid down by Diego, Gianfranco and Maurizio.

Life is the band’s 11th album and continues the brilliant work last seen on 2020’s Tragic Separation and if you are new to the band then the later works are a great place to begin your education but you will also need to delve into the past to experience the journey that has brought DGM to their current phase of virtual progressive metal perfection.

The ‘new’ DGM comprises musicians who have been in the band for a good number of years so there remains a real sense of continuity and stability with vocalist Mark Basile coming in back in 2008 with drummer Fabio Constantino being a mainstay since 1999 and bassist Andrea Arcangeli joined in 2003. However, it was in 2006 that the new version really began to take shape with the addition of the sublime keyboard skills of Emanuele Casili and the inspired introduction of the legend that is Simone Mularoni on guitar and if he is a name that you do not know then check him out as he is a shredder of the highest order. Mularoni is now the guiding light for the band and is the main songwriter and producer but this is certainly not a one man show as each member adds to the mix with delicious keyboards, storming bass and drums and in Mark Basile they have a truly stellar vocalist with one of the most powerful and soaring voices around. Factor in the exceptional lead guitar work of Mularoni and you have a band every bit as vital to progressive metal as Dream Theater, Royal Hunt, Vanden Plas, Enchant and Symphony X.

In truth, words cannot do justice to what a thrilling metal album Life is and it is one of those records that will remain a constant on your playlist for years to come. The songs are all around the 6-minute mark which allows for plenty of development and experimentation without becoming overstretched or self-indulgent and if you are in need of an immediate prog metal fix then this is the band for you, a stunning, exceptional work that is the perfect example of what hard rock and metal is all about.

Life

  1. Unravel The Sorrow (6:53)
  2. To The Core (5:56)
  3. The Calling (6:51)
  4. Second Chance (5:36)
  5. Find Your Way (5:24)
  6. Dominate (5:14)
  7. Eve (4:10)
  8. Journey To Nowhere (6:07)
  9. Leave All Behind (5:06)
  10. Neuromancer (6:13)