The Spanish enthusiasts In Vain
finally came out with their first full-lengtht album after releasing two demos, respectively in 2005 and 2007 which demonstrated a good amount of will and desire to show something more. Well, they sure got the chance they wanted with their freshly presented debut “Of God And
Men”. The record consists of eight brand new tracks and two previously released songs in the face of “Jerusalem
” and “The Demons Lair” which are taken from the demo recordings. However, along with the new material they sound more refreshed and just in the right place here.
The opener “Hero” strikes with full force and qualitative instrumental part with complex guitar solo work that provides a solid base for the voice of the frontman Daniel Cordón, who is also supported by some occasional backing vocals on the chorus. The mood of “My Little Butterfly” is a total opposite to the title of the song since the band rushes in with a mid-tempo pace, heavy guitars and then settles the mood down a bit to welcome “Rotten Cross
” with an opening reminding of the classic “Holy Diver” by DIO. Still straying away from the copy/paste option, In Vain
make a good use of it as the song takes some nice turns and the vocals start to shine more and more on the high-pitched tones. “Dancing In The Light” carries the good old heavy metal ballad-like spirit along with the melody and the dark lyrics that Daniel managed to vest well with his voice while “Hellhounds” draws attention as a contrast to its predecessor with quite some speed and aggressive vocals that often take screaming ranges. “Devil
Is My Witness” is one of the absolute highlights on the whole record – it’s the fastest and the most complex composition, sounding like a power metal hit that blazes with a truly impressive structure, melody, general and solo guitar playing plus keyboard passages that easily stick to your mind and ears. “Black Sands” is a most adequate curtain fall track, stressing on the second instrumental half of it that combines as many features of the whole album as possible, thus serving as a short resume of what the listener went through and certainly inviting to go through the whole journey one more time.
Surely “Of God And
Men” is nothing extremely innovative – we might’ve heard it all before, but that’s not a reason good enough to miss the debut of such a promising band as In Vain
. Admirers of melodic metal should really try to embrace the record with their hearts, for it’ll pay back the debt in kind. With some slight improvements and experience, In Vain
will be able to fight for their own place among the heavy/power metal names that are in charge of the big scene nowadays, but until then their debut is the necessary starting point to begin paving the way for the band’s bright future.