Dir En Grey: Different Sense

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Dir En Grey: Different Sense
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Dir En Grey: Different Sence
Alternative Metal, Experimental Deathcore
The End Records
July 5th, 2011
Release length: 13:40
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When it comes to the band Dir En Grey, everyone who has heard of this group has an opinion. Nobody ever seems to fall in the middle though, and the Metal community has always been torn with this band between loving or hating them. Between their shock filled music, appearance, and live performances (in which I watched streaming video of the group’s vocalist take something to his upper torso, unbent paperclip or pin perhaps, and cut himself enough to bleed and then wipe it all over himself during a song), the band has definitely carved (pun not intended) themselves a nice hole in the Metal culture, and obtained the notoriety in North America you’d expect Marilyn Manson to have, even after only having been introduced here not to long ago. With their next full-length release on the horizon, Dir En Grey issue a three song EP that, overseas is a CD and DVD combo, but here in North America is simply a three song digital EP download. But, has the band once again changed their sound, and is this EP release any good whether they did or did not?

This Different Sense EP gathers three songs together, including the title track for this release, which comes off the band’s upcoming full-length recording, Dum Spiro Spero. The track definitely shows a new direction for the group, which is a mixture of their already present Alternative Metal sound that the group established on their previous recordings, which includes some random clean singing moments that feel haunting against the rather abrasive Deathcore approach with some more general Death Metal-esque riffs that sums up the rest of the track. Included in that style is the traditional overly Brutal Death Metal pig-squeel vocals, which are really high pitched, as if crossing early Waking the Cadaver with Dani Filth (Cradle of Filth vocalist) shrieks. However, the very start of the track has a pretty strong bass-heavy introduction that sounds more like something one might expect from Mudvayne before heading into a bit of a crushing breakdown.

From “Different Sense” we are then introduced to a very different direction with “Tsumi to Kisei”. This appears to be a non-album track exclusive to the EP, and it makes for an interesting change of pace. While the Deathcore sound is still evident in the recording, it takes on more of an atmospheric Doom Metal meet Drone presence as well, which shows the further dexterity this band has. Aside the rather intimidating overall sound from the music, the vocals stand out greatly due to how deep and overly echoed they are creating a monstrous, inhuman sound to the gutturals, and the higher pitch shrieks, which all works with the generally heavy and dismal sound of the track. “Red Soil (Live)” is a great track as well, as Dir En Grey puts on a fantastic live performance. Though quite often it’s a horrible sound but intriguing due to shock value, that’s not the case this time. The overall performance is great, and clearly run through the soundboard, and you can really feel the energy that the fans have for the group as they chant along, even when the band isn’t saying anything.

Overall, Different Sense is not that bad an EP, and given how experimental and dramatically dynamic Dir En Grey can be on their recordings, this effort does introduce the listener well to the changed concept. However, with “Tsumi to Kisei”, it’s hard to gauge if this slower droning Doom Metal approach is something to keep an eye out for as well. One of the biggest complaints towards Dir En Grey has always been their live performances sound horrible, but with the live version of “Red Soil”, it becomes clear that the band has grown and is started to show promise in the overall quality of their live tracks instead of just trying to put on a shocking concert. Unless you’re a dedicated Dir En Grey fan, chances are good you won’t really come back to these three tracks often, and that’s mostly because they sound the best on your first time through, and not quite as great on further spins. It’s not bad, and it’s an interesting approach that shows the band once again branching out, and that becomes one of the more important things to this release. Different Sense is worth checking out as it has some good music and all three sound very unique and promising, but it definitely won’t win over any new fans or convert the people who dislike the band as it is.

01. Different Sense – 5:04
02. Tsumi to Kisei – 5:04
03. Red Soil (Live) – 3:32
Initial Pressing Score: 7/10
Dir En Grey (band)
Dir En Grey
Digital review copy of this release provided by personal funds.