Espionage – Digital Dystopia (Album Review)

Espionage was founded in 2014 and I have no doubt that they have been slaying the stage ever since, last year in particular they played a show in almost every single AUS state! Another achievement last year is releasing a glorious album named “Digital Dystopia” and was released June 1, 2018. Power metal lovers, this is an album you definitely shouldn’t have slept on but just in case you did I’m going to take you through why I couldn’t stop listening to it!

Prelude to Power (Intro): A good intro song to an even greater song. The smooth bass riff starts things off before all the instruments eventually come together with some chuggy guitar riffs and straightforward beats on drums. Awesome heavy metal instrumentation near the end of the song. A tiny bit of a feedback existing sound preparing for the next killer track.

Enter the Arena: The most metal starts to a metal track that I’ve heard in a long time. Very melodic with the power chord riffs and rhythm. Then of course a solo (wouldn’t be power metal without one). In the first track, we get to hear what Frosty’s vocals are capable of. This guy has some serious talent! Catchy choruses you can sing straight back at them. Vocal capabilities are very impressive going from mid to extremely high singing quite quickly. The vocal range reminds me of Bruce Dickinson, King Dimond and Rob Halfrod. The main chorus is the highlight of this track, it’s absolute fun, can’t get it out of my head! The song overall ticks all the boxes with me, a personal favourite of the album.

At Lightspeed We Strike: Another wicked melodic start with dual guitars. Frosty turns his vocal pitch up a notch on this track, a great example of how powerful and high this guy can go with his voice. Another Espionage song that ticks all the boxes.

Definitely a sing-along song just like the previous track.

Nightmare Approaches: I can hear a lot of different metal elements on this track including some old school thrash metal to start off with, makes this song quite heavier than most tracks off the album. Awesome horror concept with the lyrics.

Frosty’s vocals go hard on this track also has some backing vocals on the chorus overall this song is a big team effort rhythm, lead and drums kick ass on this track.

Memorable solo as well, what more could you ask for?! 10/10 track for me.

Digital Dystopia: Cool retro synth at the beginning, really brings the atmosphere to the album artwork. Awesome melodic lead at the start of the first verse with the rhythm backing it up playing super-fast. Headbangers track for sure.

If this is the new wave of Power Metal, I’m 100% in. The song structure, solos and vocals are astonishing from Espionage. They really are masters of their craft.

Not much more I can say other than you need to hear it for yourself!

Haunting Horror: Espionage can really write songs about anything, I mean the concept of this song is pretty brutal, but the sound is far from traditional death metal.

The lyric content is what you’d expect from an extreme metal band, which makes this song and band stand out a lot from the rest. With that being said there is some slightly faded death growl back-up vocals on the track for a moment which ultimately makes this song heavier.

Light Begins to Fade: Massive Power Metal instrumentation at the beginning of this track with high pitch power screams and of course dual guitar shredding.

Great bass rhythm with one of the verses. Heavy bridge build-up before the solo to add with thundering tom slamming on the drums. This song has some great elements of all instruments. Very enjoyable.

Hellfire: Speedy introduction to the song. Plenty of fast rhythm playing. Chorus is good! This track doesn’t stand out as much as the rest but it’s still a good song nonetheless!

Lost in Space: Similar to Hellfire’s song structure just more of 80’s Power Metal feel to it compared to most tracks on this album. The very old school which makes this track an absolute banger, it’s songs like this that make you appreciate the legacy of Metal as a whole.

Final Breath: A very radio-friendly track, simple riffing and rhythm is all this band needs for them to make something incredible. The last quarter of the song goes into some heavy guitar chugging before going back to the main chorus.

Once again…it’s catchy, heavy and fun!

Wartorn Atrocities: A heavy beginning, palm muting sets the mood. These lads certainly have a great playing style for Power Metal. Great way to finish off an incredible album. I would call it the Power Metal album of 2018 or maybe second to Judas Priest’s “Fire Power” I can’t decide!

Album rating: When I picked to review this album, I have to admit that I wasn’t too excited about it considering extreme metal is my bread and butter. The only Power Metal band I really listened to is Judas Priest but now I can strongly say after hearing this record that I need to expand my horizons with this genre of music cause of Espionage.

Not only do they have me as a fan of their music, but they also have me as a fan of this genre of metal. It’s been a while since a band has gotten me interested in a style or music which clearly means they’re doing something right!

The production of this record sounds massive, a very professional release. In my opinion, Espionage should be playing shows and festivals all over Europe, they already sound like they’re from there!

In saying that, I must say it’s brilliant having and band like this in AUS.

This country continues to still set the bar for a lot of metal genres all over the world.

Espionage’s Digital Dystopia doesn’t only just deserve a listen from every metalhead, but support from purchasing this record or even some merch just to give something back to these legends.

Release Year: 2018
Label: self-released
Category: album
Country: Australia

Reviewed by Scottanic, Vice Captain Of SCMH