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Metamorphosis - I'm Not a Hero CD (album) cover

I'M NOT A HERO

Metamorphosis

Neo-Prog


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4 stars METAMORPHOSIS is the 2001 project by Jean-Pierre Schenk. He released his 6th album on a Floydian sound, Teutonic on the notes of ELOY, RPWL, IQ too. A melancholic, intimate music, with dark and soft climates, nervous and melodic keyboards and a heavy side by the guitar. An album that comes more than 5 years after its last achievement.

"Dark World" opens with a neo prog vein, high spoken voice, latent sound with imposing bass, well placed synths; break phrasing, soaring keyboards raising the tone to heavy riff in an apocalyptic crescendo. "I'm Not a Hero" continues, bass lit by the keyboard, repetitive hypnotic atmosphere with explosive guitar of any beauty removing this gloom. '' Little Stars Disintegrate 'and its superb rise, we approach Division Bell' here, it's neo dripping without explosion but delicacy and spleen, bordering on despair with monotonous vocals and bewitching keyboards. "When Life Starts Again" bass and keyboards flirting with jazzy "Subway" then spatial bringing in heavy guitar for a sublime romantic slow instrumental. '' More Is Less '' on a Zeppelinian variation, a title that merges with the others, majestic, tormented, emphatic, bold and enjoyable final solo ŕ la Iris. "I Will Leave Tonight" fresher, mid-tempo, symphonic, basic neo that recalls at the orchestral level CLEPSYDRA for the synth-guitar fusion; hovering then energetic, the most sung and melodic; the choir surprises and brings back to a surprising, grandiloquent classical atmosphere. "Leftovers" posed, impressive guitar sound; an ode to today's gloomy life? , an ode of hope with reminiscences of the Satellite of yesteryear; the voice is imposing, reminds me of the tune of "Streets of Philadelphia" supported by the metronomic drums. 'So Now What' synthetic, concise, edgy to launch '' So Hard's the Road '' with a melting intro, a slow and ineluctable melancholy rise without end to the apotheosis of the instruments.

The CD to own, an imposing, austere sound leading to melancholy reverie on cold, dark and intimate landscapes; a singular sound leading to make you leave quietly far from the stressful ambient world with delicate harmonies which make it definitively enter a potential top 21.

Report this review (#2587661)
Posted Friday, August 20, 2021 | Review Permalink
Rivertree
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR
PSIKE Team & Band Submissions
3 stars Now this is the 6th band album in the meanwhile, delivered by a trio deriving from the French speaking part of Switzerland. The moniker METAMORPHOSIS is standing for a project more or less driven by multi-instrumentalist Jean-Pierre Schenk (keyboards, vocals). On this occasion reduced to a trio, he's supported by Olivier Guenat (guitars, bass) and drummer Alain Widmer again. Former member Gabrielle Mäder still has contributed some lyrics. They are offering fine neo prog styled mid-tempo songs, occasionally arranged with a proper heavy note, also some spacey ingredients and a quite passable singing voice.

The opening dramatic Dark World delivers nice choir arrangements and heavy riffs. 'I've tried my best, I'm not a hero', this probably marks the album's essential statement, presented within the second track, which surely turns out to be an album highlight. So Now What stylistically differs due to it's groove and drive. I'd like to draw some references to the likes of Phi, Clepsydra, Collage, Satellite, Perfect Storm, Eloy, to name a few. Spheric and melancholic keyboard patterns all over, each and every guitar solo is well appointed. Not really spectacular, but still a solid album in any case. 3.5 stars on the PA scale are well deserved.

Report this review (#2589086)
Posted Wednesday, August 25, 2021 | Review Permalink
friso
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Metamorphosis, the neo-prog project of keyboardist/vocalist Jean-Pierre Schenk has released its sixth studio album in 2021. The band has Schenk's emotional voice and dark & melancholy style as its main recognizable traits, but there's always some Floydian ('Division Bell'-era) electric guitar as well. The types of synths and metal guitars are tasteful as ever on this record. The atmospheres remind me a bit of Marillion on the 'Clutching at Straws' album, though Metamorphosis is less sophisticated from a compositional point of view. Usually the songs are made up of a few chord patterns and some lead guitar themes. For me personally, the concept album 'Then All Was Silent' (2005) was the record on which Metamorphosis just clicked with me and it has remained on my playlist ever since. The other albums of the band are usually a bit too much alike, and though 'I'm Not a Hero' isn't going to change that completely, it does sound like the band has progressed over the years. The vocals and lyrics by Schenk are still - and I'm glad for it - filled with a childlike hope for a better world and an senior type of sadness because of it. He fights, he struggles, he looses, he simply doesn't have an answer for it all. He drowns in it, and so does the listener. I think this is why I have always had a soft spot for this Schenker and his sorrowful, bleak type of neo-prog. He kind of makes you feel for him - which in turn is a unique musical experience. This album has a strong run of songs with the slow burner 'Dark World' and the catchy title track and it even has an instrumental track 'When Life Starts Again'. 'More is Less' is another strong song. As with almost any album these days the album could have been more tightly knit together had the two least favorite songs been cut from the record. In the end this is a strong release for Metamorphosis and it should appeal to a lot of neo-prog and crossover prog fans out here. I'll round my rating up to a four star rating, because I don't want Schenker to feel even worse about life. That's just me joking, this album will stay on my playlist just like that other fine record.
Report this review (#2594426)
Posted Tuesday, September 14, 2021 | Review Permalink

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