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Arachnoid - Arachnoid CD (album) cover




Symphonic Prog

3.86 | 146 ratings

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4 stars Arachnoid is an aptly named band; their spidery music creeps and crawls through dark dilapidated corridors in a haunted house... there is a Fellini-film quality to their nightmarish compositions.

This was one of the very best bands of the 70's French Symphonic Prog movement, and sadly they have remained quite obscure... perhaps a result of the melodramatic 'French theatrical' vocal style (that started with Ange) and so many bands from that country seem to share. This band is every bit as good as Ange... if not better.

The first song (Le Chamadere) is the gargantuan chef-d'oeuvre of this self-titled album... it is epic, masterful, and overflowing with ominous esoteric mysticism. There are many different themes and moods explored... each one highly engaging and fascinating. Lead singer Marc Meryl possesses a furious and sometimes frightening vocal delivery: alternating between hoarse screams and ghostly whispers... he has an excellent singing voice on the melodic sections as well.

'La Guepe' is another highlight... a song full of terrifying chants and voices-in-the-head insanity. This is the sound of going mad put to tape.

The music is composed largely of densely layered synthesizers from the band's two keyboardists; the songs are melodic and have a heavy atmosphere of gloom and experimental strangeness. The band often play with a raw hard edge and the rhythm section deliver a tight bludgeoning performance throughout.

There are many softer sections, but they still contain an air of arcane darkness and foreboding. Every song is captivating and the album has a great flow from track-to-track... it holds your interest for the whole duration.

I strongly recommend Arachnoid to all fans of 'French Theatrical Prog', and anyone into the darker side of Symphonic Prog.

4.5 stars

AdamHearst | 4/5 |


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