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Magnitude 9 - Decoding The Soul CD (album) cover


Magnitude 9


Progressive Metal

3.53 | 27 ratings

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4 stars With their new "Decoding The Soul," high-energy metallions MAGNITUDE NINE immediately establish a more streamlined, metallic tone than on their previous album, the excellent "Reality In Focus." "Decoding" is thus not as distinctive or dynamic as prog-leaning listeners might have hoped for from the band's return from "Reality," but it remains a crisp, forceful, and rewarding work of melodic, FATES WARNING-esque prog/power metal. The performances of "Decoding" live up to lofty expectations, with rich, expressive vocals from Corey Brown and spectacular axe attacks from Rob Johnson, who shines on every level. (Some listeners may note the relative de-emphasis of keyboardist Joseph Anastacio Glean, who adds essential atmosphere but is rarely spotlighted.) The songs are also consistently charged with biting metal energy, although the disc's creative, melodic peak comes near the end of the album, on the introspective, intense "Torn."

MAGNITUDE NINE's current musical direction leaves them less room to impress --they seem restrained from flashing their full spectrum of instrumental colors-- and "Decoding The Soul" is not essential for prog-metal fans seeking boundary-busting ambition. It is an explosive blast, however, and highly recommended for the melodic prog/power-metal faithful.

| 4/5 |


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