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Ivanhoe - Walk In Mindfields CD (album) cover



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5 stars Walk in Mindfields opens up with an explosion, an eruption of a riff - the title track leaves no doubt of what is to come for the listener: straight progressive metal. In their early days Ivanhoe had to bear the cross of being labled - even cherished and praised- by the german music press as the teutonic answer to Dream Theater. In a way they have embodied this creed but only as far as the early Dream Theater.

Being a 2005 release Walk in Mindfields is to be considered harder and more straightforward than anything Dream Theater has released since Images and Words. And to further the mismatch - neither of Ivanhoe's musicians is a Petrucci, Portnoy, Myung or Rudess. What Ivanhoe is, is a band that manages to sound heavy and tight and whose members - supported by the excellent production of the record - can shine as gifted musicians when performing together. Hovering all above the guitar and keyboard work driven forward by a pumping bass and crystal clear sounding drums is Mischa Mang's voice. Described by Bandleader/Leadguitarist/Producer Achim Welsch as guttural voice full of divine pain and demonic power, Mischa can best be compared to Kamelot's Roy Khan in timbre and vocal range. Being an accomplished musical singer he manages more than a cheesy ballad approach and drives his vocal cords through their range remorselessly.

Ivanhoe spend 3 years writing this record and it's easy to see why. Here no extra long soli improvisations are requited to drive the message home. It is delivered by intricate songwriting and intense musicmanship. Five Stars, 10/10

Report this review (#201895)
Posted Friday, February 6, 2009 | Review Permalink
4 stars This is my first review, and only because i felt this album deserves at least one decent review!

This is as i categorize traditional melodic heavy metal with progressive influences. This is much like Dreamtheater, but not as dull as they are on almost every album. These guys are innovative and they do not fear sounding queer, much like Queensryche on their first albums, but much more refined. And they do not sacrifice the joy and the flow of music in the altar of progressiveness like many prog bands are forced to do as they do not have any ideas genuinly new anymore.

I tend to judge the music by "feel". It is a very amateur way to judge, but that thatīs all i want from my music, the feeling. It is important to master ones instruments but if the soul is missing, the skill does not take you anywhere. The queerness without any connection to reality is in vain. That is why i quite like this album. It has the traditional values of touching music but with if not a totally new touch but at least a sophisticated version of personality to it.

I tend to listen way too hefty music at times, fusion, death metal, classical etc. And this album is a welcomed salvation to my strained hear. It is easily accessible but still so very rewarding, so easy to fade into.

This is not the innovation of the century, but it is something that the great Dreamtheater havenīt done for a while; This is progressive and melodic, enjoyable metal done with the devotion required to make it really work.

If any complaints required, there is a song that is faded out on this record, which is a crime against music if you ask me. Otherwise musicianship, vocals and production are of a high level.

Report this review (#247335)
Posted Friday, October 30, 2009 | Review Permalink

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