Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Divine Madness

The Divine Madness is a band I don't believe has the capacity to make a bad song. I came across them when they released their first album, Secrets, which was actually a two disk album. Now, far to often when a two disk album is released, the second disk is filler (or a remix album). However that was not the case with Secrets, both disks are full albums that feel distinct, yet connected. The first being Paradiso, the second being Inferno.

Their names for the disks of Secrets were selected perfectly. Paradiso has a much more melodic sound with a kind of hidden hope. The lyrics have an almost fallen feel to them. As if sang by someone who has dreamed of the world only to discover that reality often has other things in store. This hidden hope can be overlooked as simply sad lyrics, but that is not always the case. It is a hope that is simply tempered, yet is often shinning just behind the surface. It very much has the feel of an innocent awakening to the world. The song Haunted (one of my personal favorites) beautifully demonstrates this sense of hidden hope. Many I have shown this track to seem to think it is a depressing track, but if you really listen, you will find it to be anything but. There is no certain future, so we must never forget to cherish what we have now. To not put off for later when that later is never guaranteed.

If Inferno was from the standpoint of an innocent beginning to see the realities of the world, then Inferno is about that same indidvual years later after coming to terms with the world. Instead of wondering if all she knows is all there will be in life, she discovers passion in another. The emotion is from a much more developed view point. The naivety is replaced with a self certainty as well as getting lost in the rapture existence and love can offer.

In 2008 they released their second album Neverworld. This album, while still excellent, does not have the same flowing feel as Secrets. It is much more a 'traditional' album compared to their previous release which felt much more like an individual artistic venture. This is not to say Neverworld comes up lacking, far from it. Instead it shows a more diversified sound to it. When the album was being made, Victoria Maze stated that she wanted it to show the other members various talents as she felt that they were not as readily displayed in the first album. In a way, she is right. She is very much the center of attention in Secrets with the rest of the band working in such tight unison that the individual skills are overshadowed by the skill of the whole. While this is certainly a strength, it also can limit the musical direction. But with Neverworld, the individual strengths of every member is seen throughout the album while still showing a cohesive unity that is far too rare today.

The Divine Madness was founded by Victoria Maze who is also the singer and songwriter for the group. Spok handles the bands mixing and programming, Julian Primeaux is on guitar, Taylor Guarisco on bass, Will Henderson on keyboards, and finally Danny Devillier on drums.

But as always, words can only describe music so well. To truly appreciate it, one must hear it. To start off with I have The Divine Madness' first video for the song Closer off of the Paradiso disk of Secrets. The band's slogan is "Alice left Wonderland and started a band", and this video follows that theme perfectly.

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Their second video was also taken from Paradiso. Continuing the fairy tale concept, Gentle is an interesting take on the story Thumbelina. The song is sang by an individual who finds herself with an obsessed lover. Yet despite her dislike of the situation chooses not to flee as at least here, she can escape herself and everything that has occurred in her life. This is reflected perfectly in the video where she is nothing more than a beautiful object to her owner, trapped by both his whims and her own fears.

The third video by The Divine Madness and the first from Neverworld
is Faith. Abandoning the fantasy concept, this song takes on a Sci-Fi theme that seems especially fitting for the song.

Finally, I have the track Break Apart, also from Neverworld. This is a rather well done fan video with lyrics. This is a song that is hard to listen to and not get choked up by the emotion. A song about a failing love. A love that starts and falls apart many times due to her lovers inability to believe in himself. A lament about what could be, yet can never be due to internal fears.

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