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Wolverine - Machina Viva CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

3.86 | 64 ratings

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4 stars I wasn't aware of their previous material initially, but ultimately being impressed took the chance to receive a feeling concerning the already highly acclaimed 'Communication Lost' from 2011 too. They are appointed as a prog metal act in general, hence one or two might be irritated when listening to 'Machina Viva'. And this at least applies to the forerunner in the same way. WOLVERINE have become solid, well-behaved, are standing on relatively smooth melodic songs, somewhat in the vein of the later Pain Of Salvation and Opeth.

I mean, it is said, 20 years ago they have started as a death metal band! That noted, it doesn't matter to me though, this new songs are just what I want to hear. Headed by Stefan Zell's remarkable vocal presence they have developed some top-notch mid-tempo compositions for this album, really captivating the more I'm listening. 'Take a moment now, time to make a choice' - a wonderful relaxed start is happening with the extended suite The Bedlam Overture, though gliding over into a heavier behaviour soon.

In between Thomas Jansson changes to the fretless bass, there are some guest appearances to state, like a guitar solo from former member Per Broddesson, or just take Jonas Eklund's careful french horn. Overall a track which deserves the label perfect. Provided with some electronic drum loops Machina then is born to let us sing along, where the heart-breaking melancholic Pile Of Ash will lead into a very mellow direction, solely showing new guitarist Jonas Jonsson and Stefan Zell on the imaginary stage.

The impression is completely rounded, also including Marcus Losbjer's solid drum work and Per Henriksson, who pulls out all the stops with his mostly subtle keyboard input. Additionally cellist Stefan Moberg is in play again. WOLVERINE definitely have entered the ranks of my 2016 prog award acts. Mixed at Spacelab Studio in Germany by the way, 'Machina Viva' is an excellent album consisting of atmospheric songs, more tending to heavy art rock than metal, besides the already aforementioned bands also akin to Dropshard, Ulysses, Fates Warning.

Rivertree | 4/5 |


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