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Review: DIRE – “Volume I”

Georgia heavy metal band DIRE is currently comprised of Joran Messer (vocals/guitar) and Brandon Wade (bass). Their latest release is the fiery full-length album, Volume I, which came out last August.

The band formed late in 2010, releasing a self-titled EP in 2013, recorded at EarthSound Studios in Valdosta, GA. They began recording a full-length in mid-2015, partly in Nashvillewith Jeremiah Scott (Demon Hunter, Living Sacrifice) and partly with Lee Dyess at EarthSound Studios. The 15-track  Volume I  was released in late 2016.


Volume I  shows DIRE as a versatile and heavy act that can stretch from crunchy riffs, to ripping power metal inspired solos, to catchy hard rock choruses. We see tinges of nu-metal that show up throughout the album and some pit-ready hardcore influenced tracks.

Probably my favorite track on the album is the opener, “All Glory.” This is high octane worship; a heavy and dynamic song that points “all glory to the one true God.” Another stand-out for me is the absolute rager, “Keep Your Mouth Shut.”

Though many tracks point towards radio styled hard rock – such as “Father” and “Not My Home” – these guys keep the listener on their toes with perfectly placed added elements like the piano part in”Evil,” the acoustic intro to “No Reason,” or “Remiss” and it’s electronics. DIRE delivers a fresh batch of modern metal in such songs as “Shatter” and brooding tracks like “Watch It Burn.”

The vocals stretch from gravel-filled and gut wrenching to clean and catchy and even sometimes remind me of the worshipful depth of Jon Micah Sumrall (if Kutless got way heavier!).

Volume I is sure to appeal to fans of everyone from die hard radio rockers to hardcore kids blowing out car speakers. Whether they’re slamming through a wall of metallic riffs, or carrying you away with clean vocals, DIRE has built this album on a heavy metal bedrock .

DIRE pulls from all veins of heavy music and fuses their own red-hot brand of groovy, infectious modern metal. Volume I is a slamming 15 tracks of pure destructive power.


DIRE album cover

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