Donnie Dies - Above the Sky
Record Label: Unsigned
Release Date: January 7th, 2011
Who is Donnie Dies?
Donnie Dies! is a five-piece jam/progressive rock band hailing from Charlotte, NC. It was there that they established themselves into the Charlotte music scene, bringing in hundreds of fans to clubs and music halls with their energetic live shows. Besides ruining a fantastic movie with their band name, Donnie Dies! brings the intensity of their live show into your computer's speakers with their latest release, Above the Sky.
How is it?
While seeing Donnie Dies! live is an absolute must for anyone who truly wants a handle on what they are all about, their second full-length release Above the Sky definitely does a fantastic job of bringing the exciting and experimental side of Donnie into a listenable and manageable format. While jam bands often go on 8-10 minute jams in a single song, Donnie does a great job of bringing the jam to under 6 minutes.
The production on Above the Sky is vastly improved from Donnie's previous release Underwater and that definitely lends itself to their style of play. It's been three years since Underwater and vocalist Dries Vandenberg has improved drastically in that time. Still the weakest link in the band, it helps that singing lyrics takes a backseat to the rest of the band's instruments as Vandenberg, guitarist Mark Cichonski, and bassist Aaron Utterback lay on some fat, tight solos and licks throughout the album. Drummer Mark Zutell brings the energy level up a notch in every song and keyboardist Jeremy Hachen rounds the band to a complete and full sound.