Review by Matteo Bussotti
Italian band Belladonna formed in 2005, and since then they gained a constantly growing attention from media, bringing them also to Grammys, which is extraordinary for an independent band. They also claimed (and were recognized ) to have created a new genre: “rock noir”. Listening to their latest album, “Shooting Dice With God”, it immediately appears the sensuous side of their music, the soft roughness of their sound, and the beauty of their lyrics.
All the songs are capable of creating a very melodic carpet, before pushing you into a distorted, tight, heavy wall of guitars and drums. The effect is very catchy, and it never fails in keeping the listener’s attention at a high level. Luana‘s deep, melodic voice really gets you into the atmosphere of each song. I could go and describe every song in the album…but it’d be a waste of time, they’re all equally great. Every song has its own personality (as it should be), with a personal story told through the lyrics; they’re all similar, but they’re not the same…and we can’t say this to many albums which come out today.
On the other hand, unfortunately, the album’s strongest point, its compact sound, is also its weakness. As I said before, all the songs are really great…but there isn’t one particular song which gives you goosebumps; your attention will be at the same level throughout the whole album, and this is both a strong point and a weak point. Albums need a song which makes you say: “Oh my God, this is gorgeous”, even if the other songs are not as great.
Of course, this is my personal opinion, don’t take it as an absolute truth; maybe you’ll find that one song which completely turns your world inside-out. For me, the “thing” which got the closest to it was the ending of “Primal Dream”, which was really well-crafted with an astounding crescendo. I’ll say another positive thing, though: “Shooting Dice With God” strangely gets better towards the end, unlikely most of the other CDs, and this denotes a great attention for the songs from Belladonna, and it’s simply great.
In the end, “Shooting Dice With God” is a really, really well and carefully crafted album, with an attention for details which I’ve seen in very few other albums. All the praises go to Belladonna, who give us an album really worth listening to, even though it lacks THAT ONE song who really stands out (but I have to say that there are different moments in various songs which stand out, so they kind of compensate). And for all our italian readers…come on, show some italian pride and support Belladonna, they really deserve it!
Rating – 80/100
- All Is Vanity
- Karma Warrior
- If I Was God
- Ishtar Blues
- In My Demons’ Name
- Aura Blues
- Primal Dream
- Multiverse Love
- I Set My Controls To Overdrive
- Luana Caraffa – Vocals
- Dani Macchi – Guitar
- Valentina De Iullis – Piano
- Tam Scacciati – Bass
- Mattia Mari – Drums
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