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Doll’s Diary - Hard & Loud Award winner

Doll’s Diary
Hard & Loud
by Stew Metallion Taylor at 29 August 2017, 10:06 AM

The great thing about reviewing albums is that you get to hear new bands and music you may have never of had the chance to sample. Thanks to METAL TEMPLE, I got to hear “Hard & Loud” by DOLL’S DIARY. Wow, what a fine album. I’d never heard of this band but what a gem of an LP this is. It is a quality melodic Rock/Metal album and a pleasure to listen to. The band is newly formed from Rivne, Ukraine and this is their debut platter. What sets this record apart is the dynamic sound. The best Rock bands have this dynamic quality that allows variation in the song styles and an interesting sound that help the compositions to breathe. The vocals vary to suit the songs and there is orchestration in the delivery. The guitars really give character to each song with a great melodic and layered production.

First track, “Hard & Loud”, has a duel synthesizer and guitar riff with a strong orchestration in the vocals. It’s a catchy Melodic Rock track with good drumming and the breakdown guitar solo is shredding. The keyboards work well toward the end of the track. This reminds me of the more commercial moments of YES.  “Stranger” is a Power ballad style song with a chugging riff and good orchestration again in the keyboards. The style highlights the strong vocals and the song has a big sound.  “Can You Live Without Rock” has a more Metal feel. The riff is more Metal and the vocals deeper but the chorus is still melodic. “I’m Gonna Be Cool” continues with a Metallic riff and a good groove.

“Whenever I Dream Of You” is a slow ballad, just vocal and piano apart from the guitar solo. This is excellent, something similar to SCORPIONS. “Blondie” kicks in with a Metal riff and symbol driven percussion. This has the harmonized vocals that give the songs a big sound feel.  “It’s Time To Say Goodbye” starts as a ballad and then there is a great down-tuned style riff lower in the mix and synthesizer over the top. The production on this album is excellent. The vocals, keyboards and guitars are layered really well throughout. “Stranger (acoustic version)” closes the album. The song appears twice, but that’s ok, as it’s a great song.

As a compliment, I can feel a sense of QUEEN in this record. Not necessarily the same sound but the way there is a variation in the song styles and the use of piano, really rocking melodic guitars and great vocal variation. It is an enjoyable and really well put together collection. This is one of the best Melodic Rock/ Metal albums I’ve heard all year. I predict big things for these guys and hopefully they will get the breaks too.

Songwriting: 9
Originality: 8
Memorability: 9
Production: 9

4 Star Rating

1. Hard & Loud
2. Stranger
3. Can You Live Without Rock
4. I’m Gonna Be Cool
5. Whenever I Dream Of You
6. Paradise
7. Time
8. Blondie
9. It’s Time To Say Goodbye
10. Stranger (acoustic version)
Pavlo Horechko – Vocals, Rhythm guitars, Keyboards
Anton Honcharov – Rhythm guitars, Solo guitars
Mykhailo Kravchuk – Bass guitars
Dmytro Karasiuk – Drums
Record Label: Rockshots Records


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Edited 16 July 2018

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