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Symphony X - Symphony X CD (album) cover


Symphony X


Progressive Metal

2.87 | 191 ratings

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3 stars The self titled debut album from Symphony X is the last album from the band that I have listened to. I always postponed purchasing this album because I heard that it was badly produced and that there were another singer than Russel Allen. Those two things are true about this debut album from Symphony X, but on repeated listening I donīt think Rod Tyler is such a bad singer. In fact he has a very similar vocal style to that of Russel Allen. He is not as accomplished as Russel Allen, but on the other hand he might not have had the same oppertunities because of the bad production.

The music style is very similar to the one Symphony X play on The Damnation Game which means itīs pretty complex neo classical US power metal with progressive metal tendencies. Symphony X is first and foremost a metal band and then a progressive band. Mind that when you listen to their albums so you donīt expect this to sound like more conventional progressive metal. Compared to many progressive acts Symphony X have much more balls and they are harder edged. The guitar riffs are especially fierce and at times even brutal. The rest of the music is more conventional. There are some really beautiful Queen ( and almost Gentle Giant) influences choirs that are a big part of Symphony X vocal style. There are some really great powerful songs like The Raging Season and Masquerade on the album but also semi ballad songs which is something Symphony X have always been good at.

The musicianship is great and even on this premature debut album guitarist and main composer Michael Romeo sounds like he is on fire. He is obviously influenced by neo classical guitar hero Yngwie Malmsteen but he has a much more agressive and diverse style. Agressive eighties/ nineties metal/ thrash bands like Pantera and Metallica also seem to have had a big impact on him and of course german power metal legends Helloween has to be mentioned as an influence too. They are not the most obvious influence though, but somewhere every power metal band is influenced by them somehow.

The production is really thin and bad sounding. This destroys the music somewhat and itīs a real shame.

In a genre like the neo classical heavy metal genre Symphony X is definitely one of the best bands. Along with names like Stratovarius, Rhapsody ( Of Fire) and Sonata Arctica they were definitely one of the most exciting names in that genre in the late part of nineties and the first part of the new millinium. This album isnīt their best by a long shot, but itīs a start and if youīre a fan this one should be of interest to you. Iīm in doubt if I should give this one 2 or 3 stars and the bad production speaks mostly for a 2 star rating but the music is very good so my rating will be 3 stars.

UMUR | 3/5 |


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