ดอนผีบิน / Donpheebin - อุบาทว์ - อุบัติ / Disastrous Device Occurrence (1995) - A coherent and mature fusion of genres - 77% (26/05/14)
After a balanced first album somewhere between folk rock, hard rock, heavy metal and thrash metal and a much straighter second album influenced by pitiless thrash and death metal, Thailand’s most important pioneer metal band DONPHEEBIN took a little bit from both sides and mixed them into a technically stunning extreme metal output where the beauty meets the beast.
The opener “อุบาทว์ – อุบัติ” or “Sinister – Emerge” goes back to the band’s roots. It opens with appeasing sound samples that seem to be taken from a small village close to the nature. You hear children talking and moving around but also crickets or birds and the whole thing has a very appeasing atmosphere. Melodic guitars set in and slowly develop this song into an ambitious metal song. Three minutes into the track, the riffs and the vocals shift towards a thrash metal inspired approach. A few death metal vocals can also be heard but the mixture of genres sounds much more outthought than on the previous second album. The beauty and the beast form a quite perfect couple on here and the opening song already introduces us to all that Donpheebin has been about until then. This song is also a good indicator for what this third studio output is all about.
While the harsher tracks on the second album reminded me more of Metallica, Morbid Angel and Slayer, some of the extreme metal tracks on here rather recall the unique techniques of Voivod. A pumping bass guitar, discordant dystopian guitar sounds and straight vocals that don’t care about technical skills but only about honest emotions dominate tracks such as “ดี - ใจ – หาย” or “Good – I – Lost”. In not even three minutes, this song manages to be full of instrumental details while remaining absolutely energizing. Especially the outstanding guitar work is once again mindblowing and presents us technical skills and emotions at the highest level.
The band manages to sound very diversified on this album without losing its clear guiding line and unique style. The record sounds a lot more mature than the first two outputs. “ทบทวนทาง” or “Reviewing” could also come from one of Voivod’s first three albums but has also a few classic heavy metal influences and a slightly doom metal atmosphere in the beginning. Even the rather short “สู้จนสิ้นใจ” or “Fight To Death” prepares a few surprises in form of a vivid drum solo followed by a hesitating silence at the beginning of the otherwise rather straight song.
From time to time, the band also goes back to its folk influences and psychedelic tones that are mixed with the raw thrash metal sounds. The most outstanding example along the opener is the epic album highlight “หมายกำหนดการ” or “Timetable”.
After all, Donpheebin manages to balance its two quite different sides in form of the more experimental folk, progressive and psychedelic rock influences on one side and the energizing thrash and death metal passages on the other side on a very high level. The album has a clear guiding line, a very good flow and just the perfect length around forty-five minutes. Not every song is a killer but the band sounds more mature than ever. Even though I clearly preferred the first record thanks to its more prominent emotional guitar solos, this third record defines the band a lot better than the other two and is a convincing return to form after the monotonous second album.
Originally written for The Metal Observer« Controversial German satire about the President of Turkey: Erdowie, Erdowo, Erdoğanดอนผีบิน / Donpheebin - เส้นทางสายมรณะ / Way of Death - A destructive change of style - 62% (1994) »
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