REVIEW: Temperance – Diamanti

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Italian metal band TEMPERANCE are playing a less complicated version of symphonic power metal, as they rely more on catchy melodies and vocal harmonization than on big backing orchestrations and/or choirs. Technically, their music should be right up my alley but for some reason, I wasn’t all that impressed with their 2020 release, “Viridian,” vibrant and energetic as it may be. So, the news that their sixth studio album, “Diamanti,” would be released on November 19, 2021, via Napalm Records, made me a bit skeptical but also quite curious to check it out.

My biggest fear was that “Diamanti” would be as linear and clear-cut as its predecessor but fortunately it is not. “Diamanti” is diverse, melodic, and full of life, perfectly merging all of their strengths into one cohesive release. The vocal melodies come across as better balanced this time around, even if Michele Guaitoli’s smooth vocals are used a bit more. Music-wise, the power metal guitar riffing and symphonic orchestrations stay in their lane and only pop up when the songs require them. As Marco Pastorino stated in the press release, “it’s not our heaviest album, it’s not our fastest work,” but it doesn’t need to be all that in order to be an album worthy of repeated plays.

In between the likes of power metal anthem “Pure Life Unfolds” and the folksiness of “Litany of the Northern Lights,” the musical avenues that TEMPERANCE have taken on through this record’s runtime make it fun and engaging. If the first two tracks, “Pure Life Unfolds” and “Breaking the Rules of Heavy Metal,” are energetic and dynamic, a whole new world of sounds and moods unfolds with (and after) the title track. “Diamanti” is a bright and bombastic song with poppy undertones that is made even better by the upbeat chorus and the chorus being sung in Italian makes it really stand out. The fact that there are four versions of this track – with the chorus sang in French, German, Spanish, and English – deepens the beauty of the melodies, while speaking volumes to the universality of music. It flows neatly into the piano-driven “Black is my Heart,” a track that is as driving as it is vocally interesting, as the three singers complement each other superbly. The folky melodies of “Litany of the Northern Lights” bring to mind the exuberance of NIGHTWISH’s “I Want my Tears Back,” being just as lively, up-tempo, and melodic. Alongside “Diamanti,” this is a track that makes you feel better almost instantly, and both will translate fantastically into a live setting.

With “You Only Live Once,” things get a bit more serious, as fast guitar riffs make way for symphonic soundscapes, dramatic backing strings, and intense vocals. Both “I the Loneliness” and the symphonically driven “The Night Before the End” feel a bit more melancholy fitting with their respective titles and lyrical content, all the while the duets between Alessia Scolletti and her bandmates drive the melodies forward. With its electronic subtleties and modern textures, The Matrix -inspired “Codebreaker” is a bit reminiscent of AMARANTHE, but otherwise it’s an explosive and spirited track that once again brings to the forefront the wonderful harmonies and triple vocal deliveries that have become a signature sound for TEMPERANCE. Leaning more into symphonic metal, “Fairy Tales for the Stars” is the album’s most beautiful moment being infused with an elegance that comes from the gorgeous vocals melodies, and backing orchestrations. On the other end of the spectrum, “Let’s Get Started” is a piece of modern metal that is reminiscent of P!nk’s “Get the Party Started,” as it boasts the same level and energy of feel-good vibes. This is Alessia Scolletti’s moment to shine and show all that she has to give. Rounding off the album is “Follow Me,” a more straightforward song that is pretty much in line with all the Euro-power metal bands, having a soaring chorus and fast-paced guitar riffs and verses.

To sum it up, “Diamanti” is an album worthy of its name, as it’s just as bright and multifaceted as that precious stone. The vocal triad is in perfect harmony throughout, the symphonic elements are subtle but effective, and the power metal side is potent and robust. In between all these aspects, TEMPERANCE have really expanded their sound and the end result is exuberant in its musicality, expansive in its scope, incredibly lively, and thoroughly enjoyable. It goes without saying that “Diamanti” is probably the most fun and easy-listening release of the year, and arguably the band’s best album to date.     

Written by Andrea Crow

Tracklist

  • Pure Life Unfolds
  • Breaking The Rules of Heavy Metal
  • Diamanti
  • Black Is My Heart
  • Litany of the Northern Lights
  • You Only Live Once
  • I The Loneliness
  • Codebreaker
  • The Night Before the End
  • Fairy Tales for The Stars
  • Let’s Get Started
  • Follow Me
  • Diamanti (German version)
  • Diamanti (English version)
  • Diamanti (Spanish version)
  • Diamanti (French version)

Lineup

  • Alessia Scolletti – Vocals
  • Michele Guaitoli – Vocals & Piano
  • Marco Pastorino – Guitar & Vocals
  • Luca Negro – Bass
  • Alfonso Mocerino – Drums

Label

Napalm Records

Links

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