DORO (With the Classic Night Orchestra) - “Classic Diamonds” (AFM Records, 2004) reviewed by: MetalKnight
1. I Rule The Ruins 2. Metal Tango 3. Breaking The Law 4. All We Are 5. Fur Immer 6. Let Love Rain On Me 7. Burn It Up 8. 1000x Gelebt 9. I’m In Love With You 10. Undying 11. Love Me In Black 12. Always Live To Win (Bonus)
The skepticism Jon Lord had faced, even from his (Deep Purple) band-members, over 3 decades ago, when promoting the concept of employing an orchestra with a Rock band seems so far away. Today we have a reverse situation in that it seems many Rock/Metal bands not using an orchestra feel somewhat odd. Of course not all attempts succeed (Metallica’s S&M was terrible, in my opinion).
Enter german Rock stalwarth Doro Pesch into this melee. Does her exploit succeed? Surprise….it does!! And for a number of good reasons it does…..
First of all, this IS NOT a concerto album in the continuous sense. Doro has basically re-recorded a selection of her ever-growing repertoire using a number of orchestral instruments in the process. And this already gives an original perspective to the album.
Secondly, the orchestral arrangements are done in an intelligent manner – they are not overused and if an electric guitar solo, present in the original version, would not sound appropriate, the band does not seem to hesitate to use an acoustic guitar instead.
The songs are prevalently mellower, and this is expected of an orchestral album, but there are still a number of ‘up-tempo’ tracks such as ‘I Rule The Ruins’, ‘Burn It Up’ and ‘She’s Like Thunder’. I’d say the style is reminiscent of Finland’s Apocalyptica. The big surprise however is a cover version of Judas Priest’s ‘Breaking The Law’….imagine Rob Halford substituted by a female with german accent, throw in orchestral/acoustic instruments and add the harsh backing-voice of ex-Accept vox Udo….it sounds and is weird. But it works!
Those purists who like Metal as a harsh abrasive noise might not appreciate this release. Likewise, anyone looking for intelligent lyrics should avoid any Doro album, including this. However “Classic Diamonds” might earn Doro a few new fans from unexpected quarters, both from mainstream and metal spectra.
Doro Pesch has gone a long way since the split of her Thrash-Metal band Warlock (which incidentally have recently reunited), and released her first Gene Simmons-produced solo effort: “Doro”. But the lass has doubtlessly matured with grace!!