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Phideaux - Doomsday Afternoon CD (album) cover




Crossover Prog

4.22 | 932 ratings

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4 stars 2007 was a year plentiful of prog releases. a good feature, no? Maybe, some will argue that we had mainly quantity instead of quality but I won't argue here in order not to be unfair: many albums are too fresh and they have still the possibility to grow in the hearer's taste; otherwise, we might be watching a prog revival, even in a restrict circle, in a way that can guarantee our beloved genre its existence for many decades to come. Even so, I'm quite sure that after sieving those products from the mentioned year, PHIDEAUX's "Doomsday Afternoon" will pass over the wire mesh smoothly.

I'd never heard of Phideaux Xavier and the band he formed around him until this album, with its strange and frightening cover, reached my playing set, and I liked it since the series "1, 2, 3, 4." that opens this conceptual work, soon followed by catchy piano and thunderous singing and instrumentation. Later I was grabbed by gracious vocals and a plethora of synth sounds in a manner I had never listened to in recent years. The main musical theme is repeated continuously through the entire album, acting like a mantra or a prayer - sometimes fast and ironic, sometimes tangible and meaningful. Well, the band is showing their view of the world's fate, don't they?

First Act: the opening track, 'Micro deathstar' starts like mentioned previously and it functions like a summary. Everything one will hear en suite is displayed in this track but it's worthy to go beyond the touching and sarcastic I'm singing to the rain. reference that ends the song. 'The doctrine of eternal ice (I)' creates a grandiose and apocalyptical atmosphere like preparing the terrain to the soft 'Candybrain', a nice track adorned with acoustic guitars and flutes. The first 'Crumble' is gloomy and poignant and what a beautiful choir we have here! The act finishes with 'The doctrine of eternal ice (II)' that begins like a lullaby and goes strongly while guitars and keyboards take charge of the actions and the song reaches the stratosphere.

Second Act: the starting point 'Thank you for the evil' intros in a slow running pace going into a crescendo again thanks to the synthesizer intervention. 'A wasteland of memories' begins after a fine bridge from the prior track and the pungent tunes graze along this short track and continue for the second 'Crumble', that grabs you with its noticeable female vocals. 'Formaldehyde' has some folk touches and romantic colors, male/female singing looks like a kind of conversation intermediated by flute melodies, generating a fascinating atmosphere. Approaching the end you're seduced by a web of multiple and diverse sounds extremely catchy and amusing. 'Microdeath softstar', the longest track here and also the closing one, is also a summary-like of all "Doomsday Afternoon" content; here one will find almost everything played previously and may remember accurately all those memorable and alluring parts - a nice valediction, indeed.

Regressive? Derivative? Never mind, just enjoy. The issue is that after hearing "Doomsday Afternoon" I went backwards and discovered almost the entire PHIDEAUX output. I also discovered that this work is part of a trilogy and it'll be fine to listen to this trilogy as a one long suite. Ah, the rating. deservedly an excellent addition to any prog music collection.

Atkingani | 4/5 |


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