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The Shadow Theory - Behind the Black Veil CD (album) cover

BEHIND THE BLACK VEIL

The Shadow Theory

 

Progressive Metal

3.57 | 46 ratings

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UMUR
Special Collaborator
Honorary Collaborator
4 stars Behind the Black Veil is the debut full-length studio album by multi-national progressive metal act The Shadow Theory. The album was released in November 2010 by InsideOut Music.

The Shadow Theory was started by Greek keyboard player Demi Scott and lead vocalist Devon Graves ( Psychotic Waltz, Deadsoul Tribe). Demi Scott send some of his music to Devon Graves to ask for his advice ( he had been a fan of Devonīs work for years), but Devon was so intriguied by the material that he wrote back to Demi and suggested that they should form a band. The musicians who make up the lineup in addition to Devon Graves and Demi Scott are Arne Schuppner ( Demimonde, Complex 7) on guitars, Kristoffer Gildenlöw (Pain of Salvation, Dark Suns, The 11th Hour) on bass and Johanne James ( Kyrbgrinder, Threshold) on drums. A kind of progressive metal all-star cast if you will.

The music on the album is progressive metal with nods toward traditional heavy metal. Itīs obvious from the high quality playing on the album that all involved are experienced and skilled musicians so just to get it out of the way, that part of the album is very enjoyable. The songs arenīt focused on showing off technical playing skills though but more on creating dark and at times downright eerie atmosphere. That atmosphere is accompanied by an equally eerie concept horror story. Iīm reminded of King Diamondīs concept horror stories. Actually there are also instrumental/ vocal sections in the songs that remind me of King Diamond. Not that Devon Graves imitates King Diamondīs distinct high pitched vocal style, but Devon delivers a really varied vocal performance on the album with both singing, whispering and shouting vocals, that greatly enhances the dark atmosphere on the album. Itīs definitely one of his better vocal performances IMO. The songs are dynamic and most feature both acoustic sections, powerful heavy riffing and atmospheric and hook laden choruses. The song structures are generally simple ( for progressive metal) and catchy ( except for the closing track A Symphony of Shadows, which is quite a complex composition) but still there are challenging instrumental sections here and there to satisfy the demanding progressive metal fan. Just donīt expect Dream Theater type technical playing.

...I guess my only complaint about the album is the production, which to my ears could have been more interesting. The distorted guitars and especially the drums sound a bit flat to my ears. Itīs nothing that disturbs my listening pleasure too much though and I might be a bit pedantic even mentioning it.

Behind the Black Veil is nearly an hour long album, but thereīs not a second of the playing time where my attention wanders, and that spells quality in my book. I really enjoy how consistent yet adventurous the album is. Itīs by no means a groundbreaking album, but itīs a very enjoyable listen. Iīd say a 4 star rating is fully deserved. So to quote Devon Graves: "Turn down the lights. Light a candle and some incense. Sit in a comfortable chair. Turn it up loud, and prepare for our first rock cinema, "Behind the Black Veil".

UMUR | 4/5 |

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