Dissociative Identity Disorder, a new album by obscure French band DID, is the best example I’ve heard recently of how diverse the genre of Progressive Rock is. It encompasses a wide range of musical styles, from frantic and heavy to light and symphonic. I guarantee that you won’t ever be bored listening to the album, as the music is varied enough to stay fresh throughout its entirety. I find myself enjoying the album more and more each time I listen to it – the band has a great blend of creativity and skill, and Dissociative Identity Disorder is both unique and impressive.
DID’s musical style can be split into two distinct categories: dense and melodic. Each is present in every song, and each song switches fairly frequently between the two. It’s not uncommon for any song to dive suddenly from a light piano melody into a heavy guitar riff. Unfortunately, while the wide range of genres is one of the album’s best qualities.
Each of the album’s styles is executed well in its own right. The musicians are all very capable of adapting to different genres. Most notable among the instruments are the keyboards, played by Christophe Houssin, and guitars — courtesy of Patrick Jobard. There’s a notable keyboard presence throughout the album that is nothing short of excellent. The guitar, as well, is excellent – the guitar parts are incredibly varied, and, as I said before, will never leave you bored. I feel bad for not having much to say about Regis Bravi, the drummer. The drum part is very, very good, but I’m not much of a drum person and can’t really tell you anything further than that. Didier Thery, the bassist, is also very skilled. Unfortunately, the bass doesn’t come through as often as I’d like. This is, I’m sure, an incredibly nitpicky complaint – as a bassist myself, I felt that the bass was a little too low in the mix. Thery is, however, fantastic when he comes through, and there are a few melodic bass riffs throughout the album that I enjoyed immensely.
When it comes to vocals, being a concept album — Dissociative Identity Disorder features guest vocal contributions from some of the genre’s finest vocalists, including Saga’s Michael Sadler, Sylvan’s Marco Glühmann, Everon’s Oliver Philipps, Opium Baby’s Alan Szukics, and Maggy Lyuten who worked with Ayreon. All of them share certain roles in telling the album’s story, which is “the story of a man.” Find more about it on the band’s official website.
I’ve said pretty much all there is to say – Dissociative Identity Disorder is fantastic, and I highly recommend it to anyone who enjoys Progressive Rock. I’m looking forward to seeing their future work, and hoping for the best. The album is available from Bandcamp.