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Vanden Plas - Christ 0 CD (album) cover

CHRIST 0

Vanden Plas

 

Progressive Metal

3.99 | 188 ratings

From Progarchives.com, the ultimate progressive rock music website

CrazyDiamond
5 stars Sometimes I've been listening to this album for all day, for weeks, for months, and even after lots of listenings, it maintains the same musical power of the first spin.

Why? I'll explain. This is the story (inspired by Alexandre Dumas' "Le Comte de Montecristo") of a man, imprisoned for some crimes he has not committed. Once free, he will really become a killer, thanks to the revenge he will have on his prosecutors.

The title track "Christ .0" kicks in with an astounding gothic chorus, then the main character (Christ .0) is introduced. He is alone in prison, alone with his solitude, and his thoughts go to his love and to the friends which betrayed him. Here, a flashforward also presents us the Inspector X, the detective of the concept.

There's a thing you will notice all along the disc: every song recalls exactly the mood that it is representing (so these are the feelings you will get while listening): anger, regret, love, resignation, desolation, lost of faith.....

As the title says, in "Postcard to God" we can see the futile, unheard prayers of the protagonist in prison, pictured as empty letters to God. Another basic thing on the whole album is the presence of powerful and perfectly played guitar solos. They are omnipresent, and the good thing is that they are very different from one song to another; here you have an heavy and speedy guitar solo, and before that, a gently keyboard solo.

Then there's "Wish you were here", a song with a really catchy chorus. And just when you think the song is over, then a nice guitar-driven little piece starts, and after the great solo,the keyboard takes you back to the main theme, the same of the middle-part guitar solo.

"Silently". One two three..... Here Christ. 0, escapes from the prison and found a shelter in a cavern, where the day slowly and slowly pass. The desire of revenge achieves his apex. This is what you can call a prog song. Technical and excellent guitar solo, keyboard solo, and smooth and delicate acoustic guitar solo. All surrounded by the warm voice of Andy Kuntz, singing a majestic chorus. The final "Silently deeply creep,all my love has gone" really gives me shivers.

Then "Shadow I am", a song dominated by great bass and drums. In the middle of the song, a bass-drums crescendo with Kuntz singing "Not more that a gun to rule the world", leads to the incredible guitar solo. The song describes the protagonist, condemned to be as a shadow, forever (Shadow I am, and I ever will, and I ever will be).

"Fireroses dance" is a kind of mellow ballad, gentle in the beginning, but then exploding in a great chorus and marvelous orchestration, an emotional guitar solo (fitting perfectly the mood of the song), tempo changes and a gothic chorus. This is the track which preludes to what will happen in the next one, a kind of transition leading to the tragedy.

"Somewhere alone in the dark" is the heaviest song of the album. Heavy leading riff, heavy guitar solo, this track clearly gives the impression of the revenge being taken. "Freezing" song, cutting words : "You don't breathe anymore when i walk out the door".

Maybe simple words aren't enough to describe what comes next. The epic "January Sun" is much more than a simple song. It is a mini-opera on its own. The destiny of the characters is revealed. Inspector X understands and identifyes himself with Christ.0. He is the murderer he has been looking for. I like in particular how this song is "framed": it comes in with a little, sweet sung part and it ends in the same way it started, with the difference that the protagonist now has clearly understood his destiny and he knows the truth (I need someone to talk to now I can see the light). Andy Kuntz' voice reaches its apex: the song is so emotional and deep and has a wonderful chorus. The instrumental part is lenghty and full of variations: it is committed to powerful riffs, a keyboard solo and, as a last solo on the album, a magnificent, superb guitar solo.

"Lost in silence" is the end of the journey, the suicide seen as the only possible solution. Christ.0 / Inspector X drown himself in the ocean (please can you cry me away); the guitars here are so calm and peaceful; they're leading to the end of the story. Then only silence.

As a bonus track, "Gethsemane", an interpretation of the song on the musical "Jesus Christ Superstar". A brilliant cover and a great adding to the album.

In conclusion, a really wonderful album, beautiful compositions and great concept, fascinating voice and sensational instrumental parts.

With Christ. 0, Vanden Plas gets the vote for "best 2006 album" of who is writing.

A masterpiece of music.

CrazyDiamond | 5/5 |

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