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Arcane - Known/Learned CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

3.87 | 262 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars This is the latest album for the Australian, Heavy-Prog band ARCANE. It's a double album and man this is long at over 2 hours. This would have been a triple album back in the day and for me way too long. The first album alone is 72 minutes but it's really good and I probably would give it 4 stars if it was on it's own but it's not. The second album kills this for me as we get 50 minutes of ballad-like music with crooning vocals and I could not get through this one disc in one sitting, I found it very frustrating.

I'll focus therefore on the first disc called "Known". "Promise (Part 2)" hits the ground running until it calms right down when the laid back vocals arrive. Contrasts will continue between the uptempo and relaxed sections. "Unturning" has a nice guitar intro, very IRON MAIDEN-like. Vocals join in along with drums as the intricate guitar lines continue. Riffs and heaviness 2 minutes in as the tempo and mood changes continue. "Instinct" is different with the abundance of piano as the heaviness comes and goes. I really like the heaviness with synths before 4 1/2 minutes. "Womb(In Memoriam)" is a short vocal track.

"Selfsame" sounds really good when it kicks into gear around 1 1/2 minutes, it's quite emotional. Heavy guitar 4 minutes in as it becomes all instrumental. Great section! Vocals are back 5 1/2 minutes in. "Holding Atropos" is mellow with reserved vocals and I love the picked guitar 2 minutes in. It's an okay track overall. "Keeping Stone: Sound On Fire" sounds really good when it kicks in hard after a minute. A silent calm 6 minutes in as sparse sounds can be faintly heard. It's not long before they are kicking ass once again. "Learned" is the over 23 minute closer of disc one. It starts off with faint vocals and some atmosphere as it builds. Vocals after 3 minutes and check out the guitar a minute later. Nice. I like the vocals 6 1/2 minutes in. It settles with Spanish sounding guitar 11 minutes in. This lasts for over 1 1/2 minutes then it kicks back in. The vocals will come and go as themes are repeated. Great track.

I can hear why some people are going gaga over this with the excellent vocals and lights out instrumental work, but I can't go higher than 3 stars when evaluating this recording as a whole.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |


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