Released: 2006, Poko Records
Reviewer: Luxi Lahtinen
The 4-piece Finnish metal bulldozer Diablo was put together in the late 90’s. Back then, the band considered bands like Death, Slayer and Testament as some of their main influences. They recorded their first mini-album titled PRINCESS in 2000 that also brought them a deal with a legendary Finnish record company Poko Rekords that had intentionally (or less intentionally?) tried to avoid signing any metal bands for the label for many years, even relatively successfully - until metal as a phenomenon, became the more popular form of music in Finland, and got overall a more mass acceptance amongst people.
Since then Diablo has unleashed 3 full-length albums (ELEGANCE IN BLACK in 2000, RENAISSANCE in 2002 and ETERNIUM in 2004) through the label, and their latest output, titled MIMIC47, saw the light of day in the beginning of 2006, containing 10 new Diablo -tunes, played... well, the Diablo -way!! I said ´the Diablo Way´ on purpose because I don´t know what bands I should compare them to nowadays as these guys have succeeded in developing and painting this specific sound for themselves which could be said belonging to them, and they are privileged to have it wrapped around their music only. It´s no denying, however, some occasional bits and pieces of some of their most influential bands like Testament and Death can still be heard through their song structures, but we still don´t blame on Diablo about any rip-off mentality in here. What is certain anyway, the Diablo -guys have a respectable good sense to suck and blend pretty strong melody lines with their massively moving, bulldozer-heavy parts that create an ear-pleasing combination together. Both of the band´s guitarists Rainer and Marko have surely learnt their home lessons via a few hundred of intense spinnings of Death´s last 2-3 albums; some of the stuff these lads have churned out by their sharp 6-string fireguns, do remind me of what Chuck did in Death. So, at least that comparison can be subscribed by those individuals who have been hungry for Death -material for years already and know the stuff. Songs like "Together As Lost", "In Sorrow We Trust", "Condition Red" and D.O.A." speak all for some great volumes of hungrily sucked Death -influences, but luckily those Death -influences only rarely tend to have a negative effect on any metal band if certain bands´ musical reputation could be put on stake. Rainer´s voice works out like a raging, horny bull in an extreme testosterone, after for some willing cows to breed with - well, what should come as a relief for most of you, luckily only metaphorically speaking tho.
I must say, however, at best Diablo can sound really really good and damn convincing (check out "Mimic47" and "Blackheart") - and even at their worst, they do not pale in front of a big mass of today´s metal acts either. As wholeness, MIMIC47 is yet another well-crafted album from Diablo, and if just they can maintain their song writing level in this satisfying and rewarding level, we will hopefully see them making an international breakthrough with this album. They absolutely deserve it.