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Malice Divine - Malice Divine

Malice Divine
Malice Divine
by Daphne Minks Daly at 09 March 2021, 8:28 AM

MALICE DIVINE is a solo project fronted by Canadian musician and former ASTAROTH INCARNATE member Ric Galvez. Galvez's first solo album shows his talents while also providing evidence that this artist will only continue to improve with time. Responsible for bass, vocals, and guitar, Galvez brings in Dylan Gowan of VESPERIA and IOMAIR for this intense black metal album.

Ric Galvez is clearly a talented guitarist, and MALICE DIVINE showcases that fact very well. Galvez understands how to layout a song, and this multi-instrumental musician incorporates plenty of classical guitar details. Clearly heavily influenced by Nordic black metal, Ric Galvez takes on plenty of death components to produce a uniquely intense listening experience.

A contestant on both Season One and Two of BangerTV's Shredders of Metal, Galvez is also a graduate of York University. This former music major's lyrical inspiration is rooted in science, religiosity, and personal experiences. His lyrics show that Ric Galvez has overcome numerous barriers and misfortunes, and the outcome has been one of strength through turmoil.

The intro of the two-minute song, "Somnium Lucidus," is intoxicatingly beautiful and contributes some of the most enjoyable guitar work to be found on the album. The first track exhibits an understated air of other-worldliness and a power metal intensity. The guitar solo aligns well with Gowan's savage drumming style. A deliberately melodic lead guitar harmonizes superbly just before quickening the song's pace, taking it to the next level with intense galloping.

Track three, "Malicious Divinity," offers a mind-rattling drumming speed combined with impressive guitar riffs. Injecting subdued and yet assassin-like solos, MALICE DIVINE doesn't lose its focus, nor are they guilty of padding the album with inconsequential features to add length. Impressive drums and an early British metal guitar style make each component feel intentional. This song is well suited for a live venue and offers plenty of imagery of ethereal smoke and lights.

"Ancient Visions," is the sixth track and also an album favorite for this reviewer. Reminiscent of old-school speed and thrash, this tune offers a lot to the listener without getting messy. This hard-hitting track utilizes brilliantly placed change-ups and gloomy lyrics that are in-time and intelligent.

A second-favorite is the seventh track, "In Time." This song immediately brings with it imposing rhythms, tormented vocals, and impeccably interwoven variants. As the piece unfolds, it provides classic black metal, angst-ridden imagery with speed metal chords.

The final track, “The Transcendence of Isolation, offers a spectacular Spanish guitar solo that cascades beautifully. The tranquility continues just before morphing into an atmospheric, power metal dirge that can only be described as "epic." MALICE DIVINE's debut album is a highly aggressive black and death metal-inspired journey with a layer of melody rarely found in traditional black metal.

Songwriting:  5
Musicianship: 8
Memorability: 4
Production: 7

3 Star Rating

Tracklist:
1. Somnium Lucidus
2. Quantum Manifestation
3. Malicious Divinity
4. Triumphant Return
5. Into Subconscious Depths
6. Ancient Visions
7. In Time
8. Intuitive Realization
9. The Transcendence Of Isolation
Lineup:
Ric Galvez - Vocals, Guitars, Bass
Dylan Gowan - Drums
Lindsay Schoolcraft - Harpsichord
Record Label: Independent
     


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Edited 20 June 2021
 

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