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Arena - The Seventh Degree of Separation CD (album) cover





3.47 | 346 ratings

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4 stars 7/10

Over the years Arena has built a considerable reputation in the circles thanks to neo-prog albums like The Visitor and Contagion. Being my favorite band of neo-prog alongside Pendragon I was really curious to hear your new album, despite the mixed reviews it has received. After it has been six years since his last release and some changes have occurred - Ian Salmon replaces John Jowitt on bass and Paul Manzi is now the lead singer in place of Rob Snowden.

The Seventh Degree of Separation is another concept album of the band, but as Contagion we have a somewhat obscure history - something about life after death, separation of body and soul, whatever. Courtesy of the ever enigmatic Clive Nolan. Unfortunately Nolan seems to be in the background on this album, and the guitar is the dominant component of Mitchell, but the virtuosity of their riffs and really please me.

The album is very concise, featuring 13 songs in just over 50 minutes. This probably displease the fans because the music is much less complex, except for the mini-epic Catching the Bullet. I really the fault of the album is the lack of flow of the music - it really sounds like mainstream parts, which is no problem, but the lack of interaction between them makes the experience of the listener a little difficult.

But apart from that the songs are really nice to hear - try listening to them as regular songs, and avoid making comparisons with the Arena of the past, if not lower rankings will rain! My favorite songs are Close Your Eyes and What If, which actually were the first songs I heard (in Youtube videos...).

Between 3 and 4 stars, I would reserve the highest classification. But I can say I dislike it so much as Contagion and Pepper's Ghost.

voliveira | 4/5 |


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