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Lanfear - The Art Effect CD (album) cover

THE ART EFFECT

Lanfear

Progressive Metal


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aapatsos
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
Prog Metal and Heavy Prog Teams
4 stars Lanfear is a relatively unknown power/prog metal band from Germany that has received a few very positive critics for its work but still remains in the so-called "underground" scene. The band manages to build on the long tradition of the German power metal school, adding interesting progressive metal elements without resembling directly to any of the widely-known establishers of the genre. Rather than following the more established route of titans such as Helloween and Blind Guardian, Lanfear tend to employ a more straightforward approach, closer to the school of Heaven's Gate.

One of the most valuable assets of the band on this album is Tobias Althammer that manages to shift from catchy, deep to high-pitched vocals with great effectiveness, providing a multi-dimensional range of moods. With the exception of two tracks written by keyboardist Richie Seibel, Markus Ullrich is the man for all compositions. This is obvious from the riff-oriented concept of the album; either being fast or mid-tempo, Ullrich delivers exceptional power metal riffs. Variety between tempos makes this album interesting and quite different from modern-day power/prog influenced bands. The great melodic refrains resemble to other promising bands of the genre such as Labyrinth and Manticora. It is also interesting to observe some more "American"-style influences such as Evergrey, Conception and Queensryche.

Only a single moment (Fortune Lies Within) does not live up to the standard that the rest of the album sets, but this is not enough to affect the solid performance and high quality of The Art Effect. Keyboards have a more accompanying rather than leading role, and this has probably worked out well for the resulting sound. The first half of the album is somewhat stronger and peaks at the great melodies of Conscience Inc.. Other highlights are the Evergrey-like Stigmatized and the adventurous and melodic The Artefact.

An album that generally keeps away from the often "cheesy", bombastic atmosphere of Euro-power/prog, The Art Effect is certainly worth the attention of prog metal listeners that are keen on modern riff-oriented heavy power in the vein of Labyrinth or Evergrey. A solid 4(-) rating is well-deserved for an album from which I could not have any serious complaints.

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Send comments to aapatsos (BETA) | Report this review (#305578)
Posted Tuesday, October 19, 2010 | Review Permalink
b_olariu
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Lanfear is a power/ progressive metal band from Germany beggining their career in early '90s. Untill they release this album from 2003 named The art effect at Massacre records they were little known and with moderate succes in this field. With this third album they realy manage to enter in the front league of the genre. The music is very much up tempo most of the time with solid musicianship , crunchy guitar chops, great drums and above all an excellent vocalist Tobias Althammer. The progressive metal is very well melted with more power elements, the top notch pieces are the title track with some fantastic guitar lines, what a great guitar player is Markus "Ulle" Ullrich, he knew how to make a piece shining from start to finish, some brilliant progressive breaks aswell and the vocal parts are simply amazing. Another highlight of the album is Deeper, where all musicians truly did a great job. I guess this band and this album in particular is one of the most pleasent ones I've come across in last years in this genre, everything is top notch, I never guessed I'd liked so much, even I have the album for more then 5 years I never payed a very much attention untill this year when I decided to give some proper spins. Surprise , surprise these guys realy kick ass for sure. So, a very worthy album from these germans, very similar with Anubis Gate from Denmark or one of their country fellows Tomorrow's Eve. 4 stars easy, solid and damn catchy.

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Send comments to b_olariu (BETA) | Report this review (#588973)
Posted Friday, December 16, 2011 | Review Permalink

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