Saturday, June 9, 2012

Album Review: Diablo Swing Orchestra - "Pandora's Piñata"

Sorry guys, but today I'm going full hipster. Diablo Swing Orchestra (You mean you haven't heard of them?), herein called DSO just opened the floodgates with their newest release Pandora's Piñata. I'm not sure what genre to file DSO under, 'cause their music is just a giant clusterfuck of different styles. I mean that in the nicest way possible, though.

Half funky swing Jazz, half Metal. All killer.
DSO is of Swedish extraction, which is awesome in my books because a whole whack of my favorite bands come from Sweden (Meshuggah, Opeth, every Melodic Death Metal band ever). I've only recently discovered them, so I'm still shaky on their background, but that's irrelevant because their music is fucking awesome. DSO features the use of traditional Rock instruments like guitar, bass and drums, but spice things up with the addition of a cellist and a horn section consisting of one trombone and one trumpet.

Pandora's Piñata is a veritable feast of everything fun. Blaring guitars, funky-as-shit bass, pounding drums, a ringing horn section and soaring vocals not only make an appearance on this album, but are pretty much constant the whole way through it's 52 minute running time. DSO swing and groove with the best of them, but can smoothly bring things down for some slower, more moody tracks ("Exit Strategy of a Wrecking Ball") or bust out some movie-soundtrack-worthy music ("How to Organize a Lynch Mob", "Justice for Saint Mary").

Just the fact that the guy on the left has dreads makes this band that much fucking cooler.

I can't really think of anything to criticize this album with, honestly. If I had to choose one thing, it would be that sometimes it sounds a little too crowded, with all the instruments going at once with both vocalists singing over top. That's if I had to choose a downside. I personally love the crowded, wall-of-sound style on Pandora's Piñata.

Bomb-Ass Tracks

Voodoo Mon Amour: The opening track really takes it away. It's dark, groovy, and playful. "Voodoo Mon Amour" really punches you in the face screaming "WE'RE DSO AND WE DON'T GIVE A FUCK ABOUT YOUR GENRES."

How to Organize a Lynch Mob and Kevlar Sweethearts: Yeah, I know its two tracks, but "How to Organize a Lynch Mob" is only 53 seconds long, and transitions so perfectly into "Kevlar Sweethearts". The former song is one of those soundtrack styled ones, while the latter song really reminds of Nightwhish, but way cooler.

Justice for Saint Mary: Clocking in at 8:17, the longest track on Pandora's Piñata is definitely the most grand in scope. The instrumentation is superb (the soundtrack style is used here again), with some haunting vocals floating over top. Once it starts to reach the six minute mark, then shit hits the fan. I don't want to spoil what it sounds like, but it's an eargasm and a half.

On a Playlist With: David Maxim Micic, Devin Townsend, and the "Repo! The Genetic Opera Official Soundtrack"

Overall Score


My first 4.9. 4.9 means "damn near perfect" and oh man, is this album ever damn near perfect. I'm going down to the record store today to definitely order myself a copy. I haven't enjoyed an album this much in a long time.

That's all for now, folks. Keep being Awesome.

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