Released: 2003, Scarlet
Although I knew this band had been around for years (since 1994) it still somewhat surprised to learn that HIDDEN PLACE is the fifth release for this Italian progressive metal band. I think, (but am not sure) that DGM stands for Diego, Maurizio and Gianfranco, the three founding members. The band has gone through a line-up change or two over the years and after a stint on Elevate have settled on another great Italian label, Scarlet.
Progressive is the word of the day and some of the influences are readily apparent as vocalist Titta Tani is a member of the Dream Theater cover band the Ytse Jammers! That is not to say clone as over the course of several CD’s the band developed a signature style that incorporates elements of Rush, Savatage, the aforementioned DT and a healthy dose of metal.
Tempos vary from quite fast on cuts like ‘Invisible Rain’ with it’s double kick and wave upon wave of soloing before ending with a gentle acoustic piano outro, to far mellower compositions that sound almost like the band Ten on ‘Storm #351. Melody and composition are another two descriptors. This band has good doses of both. They write interesting songs without degenerating into techno-prog indulgence and enough melody that songs, while not instantly hum-able, have ways of weaving into your memory centers. The song ‘Heaven’ is a technical showcase extra-ordinaire opening fast, slowing down and taking off again.
There is an entire world of cool Italian, prog-metal bands with amazingly well done albums, bands like Madsword and Black Jester and these guys fit right in. I hope to hear more from them in the future. The DGM website needs a lot of work but you can visit it at http://web.tiscali.it/no-redirect-tiscali/dgmsite/titta_tani.htm