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Le Scimmie - "Dromomania" (CD)

Le Scimmie - "Dromomania" CD cover image

"Dromomania" track listing:

1. 0000 (0:56)
2. L’Oblio (1:58)
3. Dromomania (3:51)
4. Athazagorafobia I (4:23)
5. Athazagorafobia II (1:03)
6. Frustrazione della Psiche (3:08)
7. Aurantifolia (0:37)
8. Frekete (2:20)
9. Il Filo di Lana (3:27)
10. Nostofobia (2:14)

Reviewed by on May 18, 2011

"With the absence of vocals or keyboards, the album ends up essentially being guitar jam music, but it’s competent and interesting guitar jam music above and beyond what might be heard in any given rehearsal room."

Completely dropping the standard vocal element, the Italian duo that comprises Le Scimmie has forged ahead on its own terms to create a debut album constantly on the move and not particularly interested in genre labels. Le Scimmie may be an instrumental project, but don’t let that tag create the wrong impression, as the band is still plenty heavy and has nothing to do with the realm of the symphonic. Metal fans tired of the same old thing and looking for something a little off the beaten path could do a lot worse than the band’s debut album “Dromomania.”

Distortion is the name of the game on the guitars here, which gives the music a dirty and slightly grungy edge. In places there are chilled-out and atmospheric segments, but overall the songs are heavy and move along at a brisk pace, for a complementary balance of styles. With the absence of vocals or keyboards, the album ends up essentially being guitar jam music, but it’s competent and interesting guitar jam music above and beyond what might be heard in any given rehearsal room.

The use of frequently repeating guitar lines gives the release an impression of constant motion, almost like something out of an action sequence from a movie. That shouldn’t be too surprising, considering the inspiration of the music, as “Dromomania” is an all-consuming urge to wander to new places. The music video for the title track matches the music perfectly, showing a band member constantly running, always looking over his shoulder, and only occasionally stopping for mist shrouded moments of contemplation. Taking the music in a slightly different direction, the eighth track “Frekete” also throws in a new element by playing out as an energetic rock tone that’s almost party-friendly.

Unfortunately those repeating guitar lines do get out of hand by the end, making the album very repetitive and overly familiar by the time the disc is done. If that issue could be worked out, whether vocals get added later on or not, Le Scimmie could be on to something well beyond just jam music. Although not without its problems, “Dromomania” is overall a solid debut offering that can appeal to many different groups and fans of just about any kind of metal.

Highs: Grungy guitar tones and interesting feeling of motion in the songs.

Lows: The album gets very repetitive by the end, and overall it's basically just jam music.

Bottom line: Italian duo creates interesting guitar jam debut album that's a little off the beaten path.

Rated 3.0 out of 5 skulls
3.0 out of 5 skulls


Key
Rating Description
Rated 5 out of 5 skulls Perfection. (No discernable flaws; one of the reviewer's all-time favorites)
Rated 4.5 out of 5 skulls Near Perfection. (An instant classic with some minor imperfections)
Rated 4 out of 5 skulls Excellent. (An excellent effort worth picking up)
Rated 3.5 out of 5 skulls Good. (A good effort, worth checking out or picking up)
Rated 3 out of 5 skulls Decent. (A decent effort worth checking out if the style fits your tastes)
Rated 2.5 out of 5 skulls Average. (Nothing special; worth checking out if the style fits your taste)
Rated 2 out of 5 skulls Fair. (There is better metal out there)
< 2 skulls Pretty Bad. (Don't bother)