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Condition Red - II CD (album) cover


Condition Red

Progressive Metal

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4 stars This second album by Condition Red proves that they are much more matured musically and in terms of style this one is heavier, i.e. more progressive metal, than the debut album. The music has much more clear direction as all songs contained here in this II album share similar styles combining heavy metal and neoclassical with good melody line. As for musical taste, I like this album more than the debut one because it's more energetic even though the jazz components have disappeared here. But the remaining is really stunning!

Matured musically and clearer music direction

It opens nicely with "The Warning" (1:20) through a great combination of violin and ambient keyboard which creates an overall tone of the album. It shifts wonderfully and energetically to the second track "Eye Of A Storm" (5:25) in relatively fast tempo. The key attraction point is the dynamic keyboard sound followed with heavy music with guitar riffs. It flows in power metal style accompanying Ella vocal work. The keyboard solo is really stunning throughout the track. "Cycles" (5:03) starts with keyboard solo which than flows dynamically (and interestingly!) in neoclassical style for such relatively long period followed with music riffs that brings the music flows nicely. I find many passages in this album that use similar neoclassical style like this and it makes me more interested with the music. It's stunning, really. It's like combining Rick Wakeman with progressive metal music. "Time Passes By" (4:46) slows down the music but it still an interesting track. "The Eagle's Return" (3:03) starts with drum solo and the music is similar with Iron Maiden plus stunning keyboard solo. "It's Not Too Late" (6:58) is like a ballad with great acoustic guitar work plus good vocal line by Ella augmented with nice keyboard.

"Rondo" (3:24) is presented with great guitar solo combined with string section. It's really a nice composition. "Why Won't You Hear Me?" (6:05) brings the music into more grandiose setting with excellent combination of keyboard, string section and guitar riffs followed beautifully with short keyboard solo right before Ella enters her vocal into the music. "Seven Stars" (3:42) starts wonderfully with guitar distortion and effects followed with intertwining keyboard and guitar works. "In/Out" (2:19) demonstrates good bass guitar solo followed with blast of symphonic power metal music. "Train Insane" (4:21) returns the music back into neoclassical power metal. "Out Of The Red" (2:11) closes the album with mellow style music combining keyboard and guitar fills.

Overall, this album deserves more than excellent music with its root on progressive metal using intense neoclassical metal with the sound of keyboard. The production quality is much better than the debut album. It's an excellent addition to any prog music collection with 4.5 stars rating. Highly recommended. Keep on proggin' ..!

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW (i-Rock! Music Community)

Report this review (#176617)
Posted Sunday, July 13, 2008 | Review Permalink
4 stars Condition Red is one of the bands where is seen Lars Eric Mattson on line-up. Besides his solo career, he is also a very busy man in other bands, like this one, Book of refelction and with his band but without Lars Eric - simply Mattson. Well this album is realy good, named simply - II from 2003. Not entirely an album under prog metal flag, here are some very nice moments a la Magenta, specialy the vocal parts made by Ella Grussner, some very intristing instrumental pieces, some of the moments remind me of Yngwie Malmsteen but very well played and damn catcy all the time. On this album is also invited another well known guitar player Alex Masi - who plays on 3 pieces. So all in all a great album, very variated, with neoclassical aproach and very dynamic elements, this is not another prog metal album, with great keyboards attacks made by Lars himself and Alexander King and very strong are the drums made by Gerald Kloos. The best pieces are Eye Of A Storm, all instrumental ones and the smooth Time Passes By. I will give 4 stars for sure, great album, desearve a better view by anyone intrested to find who this Lars Eric Mattson is, in what project did he plays. And by the way he is the master behind the well known LionMusic label. If you want to buy something diffrent in prog metal field try this one, he is available on LionMusic on a nice price. Recommended and 4 stars.
Report this review (#199269)
Posted Friday, January 16, 2009 | Review Permalink

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