(All Album Reviews by doh)
One of the guilty pleasures of the prog fan is to try to categorize all music into specific genres. When a band doesn't quite fit existing genres, the prog fan enjoys creating new ones. For this reason, Grimlord must be prog fans as they have labeled themselves "melodic war metal", a very uncommon phrase according to a Google search. This phrase works as well as any to describe this Polish metal band on their second album, Dolce Vita Sath an as.
Based on that simple phrase, there will be many immediately uninterested to continue any further in the review. I likely can't offer any compelling arguments for them to continue. To appreciate this band, you will already have to have an appreciation of some of the more aggressive fringes of prog. Think Iron Maiden brought into the future and roughed up quite a bit. Although the vocal styling is not necessarily growling a la Opeth or Meshuggah, it's very rough and not pretty by design. The easiest comparison (both vocally and musically) is In Flames, for those familiar with that band.
If your interest is piqued by that description, you should definitely continue reading because this album has all of the maturity of those more veteran bands. Although this is only their second release, Grimlord themselves have been together for more than ten years. This shows in the level of composition and musicianship. This is not just straight-out cookie monster metal. At times, it dials down more similar to early Opeth ("Ancient Land of Ys" or closer "Lamentation Sword)" or completely throws you for a loop (like the short intro to the title track). The more metal tracks range from the highs of the catchy opening title track with its anthem chorus to the lows of some of the more forgettable middle tracks. About half of the tracks are instrumental. Despite the musical variety mentioned, this is still mostly all head-bang worthy and it makes sure you never forget that. In the end, your opinion of this disc will depend on how you feel about that last sentence. If you can't get enough of the mentioned bands, this is worthy of your attention