DOVAS is the solo project of Chris Dovas, drummer extraordinaire. He plays in Seven Spires, tours with Vital Remains and has recorded with numerous bands. He also runs a drum clinic known as the Double Bass Bootcamp. Did I mention he has accomplished this at the age of 23? Preacher Of Lies is the second solo effort. Chris plays all drums, most guitars and sings like the first one. His friends supply the rest of the power behind this mammoth disc. DOVAS is New Hampshire-based Symphonic Death Metal meant to leave you breathless and possibly view the world through a slightly different lens.
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- Chris Dovas – Drums, Vocals, Guitars
- Peter De Reyna – Bass
- Caio Kehyayan – Lead Guitars
- Elena Verrier – Guitars (Guest solo on The Conflict)
- Adrienne Cowan – Orchestration
- Special thanks – Jack Kosto – Mixing/Mastering
Preacher Of Lies
Release date – February 14, 2022
- Wrath of God
- Preacher of Lies
- The Conflict
- Fear Within Your Heart
- New Beginning
- Proceed to Enslavement
- In Sorrow You Shall Suffer
The disc opens with “Wrath Of God”, a seven-plus minute track with a more melodic composition than most of DOVAS’ songs. The drums are freaking incredible. This is what Chris Dovas does best. He’s a multi-instrumentalist but a drummer through and through. The guitars are excellent and mix in nicely to the tempo. The solo is impeccable. The vocals are dark and rough, just like Death Metal is supposed to be. The clean vocals provided by Peter De Reyna are a nice contrast. The haunted, almost hollow tone adds profound depth to the song. The orchestration is precise and feels like it is organically part of the tune. The orchestration is darkly beautiful.
“Preacher Of Lies” is next and is a blazing track from start to finish. Forget the melodic parts you heard in the last song. This is blistering Death Metal from beginning to end. Again, Caio’s lead and solo guitar work are excellent. Adrienne’s orchestration is phenomenal. The rhythm is frenetic and chaotic, just like it should be. The pillars of sound, the textures of the instrumentation and the blending of the vocals into this creation are something compelling.
Similarly, “The Conflict” is another blistering fast song that mixes all the harshness into something appealing. Elena’s guitar work is on point. She keeps pace with the song, adding great tonality. The guitars throughout this record are just astounding. The keyboards and orchestration on this track are elegant. They take the song to a new level.
“Fear Within Your Heart” and “New Beginning” both rely heavily on chunky guitar riffs that are supplemented by ethereal leads and fills. The songs are brutal and dark, musically and lyrically. The layers of sound wash over you as you listen, enveloping you in a cocoon of sonic comfort. The solos and fills throughout the songs add layers of texture that flesh them out, creating a huge feel. That melodic section around the solo in New Beginning is a beautiful piece of music. It’s like a pause in the middle of a battle to stop and appreciate the sunset over all the carnage.
“Proceed To Enslavement” begins with a nice pounding rhythm and excellent drum flurries. Then, a quick bass fill and the rest of the instruments join for the full launch. Another brutal tempo and fantastic rhythm follow. The journey through this soundscape ends with “In Sorrow You Shall Suffer”. This is the six-minute wrap to the story, the epic ending to the epic tale. There is no happiness at the end of this journey. The hero does not ride into the sunset with the heroine. The album ends abruptly, fading off into nothingness.
This record feels like it runs at 666 beats per minute. The tempo leaves me exhausted by the end but in a good way. This is a disc with a group of musicians who are world-class. They write and play at the top of their games. This record sets a new standard. From Chris hammering out that tempo and Peter somehow managing to keep up with that (a feat in its’ own right!) to the intricate guitar work of Caio and Elena, this is in a class by itself. Add to that the masterful orchestration of Adrienne, and you have a winning combination.
This record is a fast-paced ride through a sonic landscape inhabited by dark tones, heavy textures, and eerie themes. This disc is not for the faint of heart. The tempos are brutal but done with such accuracy and skill that it is impossible not to admire the exquisite musicianship throughout this record.
- Guitars – 10
- Rhythms – 10
- Vocals – 9
- Songwriting – 9
- Production – 9
- Overall – 9.40