Dofka – Humanity Bleak

Reviewed: March 2010
Released: 2010, n/a
Rating: 3.5/5
Reviewer: Munkwunk

Pittsburgh-based Dofka – named for the band\’s guitarist, Jim Dofka – is a reconstructed entity. The band was formed several years ago to showcase Dofka\’s shredding prowess, and it certainly delivers on that point, but this release also includes several new members to the band\’s line-up which has helped change the direction their sound is heading.

The sound they are dishing up nowadays is a blend of traditional heavy metal and some occasional death-like growls. This isn\’t your Children of Bodom-style power/death mix, though. On the contrary, they come off sounding like a slower-paced Imagika with a hint of Layne Staley\’s vocals. It isn\’t a bad mix, and the album is definitely worth giving a few spins.

The only downside is the pacing; every single track on HUMANITY BLEAK is mid-tempo. The killer shredding, drumming, wailing, and growling all beg to be let loose, and this is especially apparent on track eight, \”Immaculate Lie\”, in which the use of growling is especially prevalent. This is the kind of music that demands to be let off the chain so it can truly hunt, but instead it is left in the veritable junkyard to ward off the occasional trespasser. The sad thing is that this beast remains chained the entire length of the album, never to realize its full potential.

Dofka certainly have the talent that is needed to produce a killer album. Indeed, HUMANITY BLEAK is worth a listen or two by any enthusiast, but the band\’s full potential was not realized here. If this is the direction their new sound is headed, there may definitely be great things to come.


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Track Listing:
1. Tragedy Remains – 4:29
2. Evocation – 4:48
3. The Bitter End – 3:25
4. World On Fire – 4:09
5. Humanity Bleak – 3:58
6. Second God – 4:16
7. Blood Runs Black – 5:23
8. Immaculate Lie – 5:26
9. This Sacred Flame – 3:46
10. 23 Pine Avenue – 3:39

Andrew D. Cagna – Vocals
Jim Dofka – Guitars
James Babcock – Bass
Mike Barnett – Drums