Tuesday 23 July 2019

Regum - Regum (2019)

Country: Peru
Style: Hard Rock/Heavy Metal
Rating: 8/10
Release Date: 20 Jul 2019
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If Coffin Rags were a good warm up for today's double bill from Peru, Régum are a great way to finish that up. I've had this one for a while and I like it more with each listen. They play it hard and heavy, with some songs more on the rock side and some more metal. They ought to do well with both those audiences.

They start strong with Refugio and Laberinto, but Linea Blanca just bounces with pent up energy and refuses to let us be. Moisé Huamán capably sets the vibe on drums, giving life to the song that the rest of the band play along with. Vocalist Joaquín del Castillo gives everything he's got on this one, his raw voice working really well and he even finds a really nice high note to put the icing on the cake. It's an impressive rocker.

There are nine songs here, none of them bad, and three of them killers. I'm fond of the fact that each of those killers is unlike the other two.

Duende is even more upbeat and bouncy but it's an alternative song, starting out as punk pop and ending up as glam metal without changing anything but the voice that's singing. That's del Castillo on the chorus; is it him in a different style on the verses too or does someone else step up to the mike? This one ought to be a real singalong song in Spanish speaking countries and should be firing up the airwaves in Lima.

The third is Ritual Canavis, which starts out with voice and drums like it's a Quiet Riot-style belter. Then it leaps from idle into high gear with the energy and some of the style of early Guns n' Roses, especially given that the guitars are a focal point here. Eloy Valdez gets a decent solo and Deyvi Hidalgo on rhythm bolsters the whole song wonderfully.

The opener, Refugio, is arguably a fourth killer, because it flows so well, again due in large part to those guitarists. It's heavier than those other three, but still carries a strong melodic line with del Castillo searing his throat just as much. It could be my favourite song on the album, though I'm not sure how to explain why except just personal taste. I like the balance of precision backing and raw vocals. I like the escalations. I like the way it ends on the turn of a dime. I just plain like this one.

And there are another five tracks that are all worthy. If Refugio is one of my favourites for vague reasons, yours could be any combination of the songs for your own vague reasons. Each time I listen through, another one grabs me for some reason, whether it's the guitarwork on Sonrisa Nocturna or the cool opening vocal on Poder Corrupto.

I feel that this is unusual for me to say, because I've got used to there being standout tracks on any album just from an objective standpoint but, here, they're all worthy and eager to engage with you. It's like wondering why you picked that particular puppy to adopt rather than those other eight. I guess it means that this is a damn good album.

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