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V: THE NEW MYTHOLOGY SUITE

Symphony X

Progressive Metal


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Symphony X V: The New Mythology Suite album cover
4.15 | 500 ratings | 76 reviews | 44% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection


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Studio Album, released in 2000

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Prelude (1:07)
2. Evolution (The Grand Design) (5:20)
3. Fallen (5:51)
4. Transcendence (0:38)
5. Communion and the Oracle (7:45)
6. The Bird-Serpent War / Cataclysm (3:59)
7. On the Breath of Poseidon (3:04)
8. Egypt (7:04)
9. Death of Balance / Lacrymosa (3:42)
10. Absence of Light (4:58)
11. A Fool's Paradise (5:48)
12. Rediscovery (1:24)
13. Rediscovery pt. II - The New Mythology (11:57)

Total Time: 63:01

Lyrics

Search SYMPHONY X V: The New Mythology Suite lyrics

Music tabs (tablatures)

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Line-up / Musicians

- Michael Romeo / guitars
- Michael Pinnella / keyboards
- Jason Rullo / drums
- Russell Allen / vocals
- Michael LePond / bass

Releases information

INSIDEOUT #IOMCD066 / SPV 085-41242 CD

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SYMPHONY X V: The New Mythology Suite ratings distribution


4.15
(500 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(44%)
44%
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(34%)
34%
Good, but non-essential (13%)
13%
Collectors/fans only (6%)
6%
Poor. Only for completionists (3%)
3%

SYMPHONY X V: The New Mythology Suite reviews


Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Marc Baum
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Symphony X are by far better than all prog metal bands, who try to play like Dream Theater or Queensryche! "The Devine Wings Of Tragedy" was a milestone in the symphonic progressive metal genre. The follow-up "Twilight In Olympus" was a bit inferior but still excellent, because the songwriting seemed sometimes a bit uninspired but with "V" they've overshadowed themselves! The majestic choirs on this record remind on Queen again in the widest part and the as always great guitar work of Michael Romeo (something like the US answer to Yngwie Malmsteen) leaves me stand with an open mouth! The technical arrangements are incredibly perfect, but Symphony X don't do the same failure like most prog metal bands do, which mainly concentrate on the technics only. They create powerful, great symphonic progressive metal epics, which couldn't be done better! The about 64 minutes running time of "V: A New Mythology Suite" seems like one big multiple orgasm, and who says that only women are supposed to have these?

"V" is a perfect progressive metal sondtrack to the atlantis history, musically & lyrical. No time for low-points, but one song sets apart from all: "Rediscovery Part II - The New mythology". Russel Allen is an incredible shouter, he's one of the best singers of the prog metal genre, which he can show in this 12 minutes long beautiful epic. Don't read this boring review any longer and buy this album, if you are in the least interested in symphonic prog metal, I highly recommend it!

album rating: 10/10 points = 98 % on MPV scale = 5/5 stars

point-system: 0 - 3 points = 1 star / 3.5 - 5.5 points = 2 stars / 6 - 7 points = 3 stars / 7.5 - 8.5 points = 4 stars / 9 - 10 points = 5 stars

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Send comments to Marc Baum (BETA) | Report this review (#7148) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, December 24, 2003

Review by Greger
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars I have heard a lot about SYMPHONY X before and all the rumors told me that they were among the best in their genre. As I finally got to hear them on their fifth release entitled "V - The New Mythology Suite", I had very high expectations. Could they really live up to their reputation? - "V - The New Mythology Suite" is a concept album about Mythology. I guess that many of you have already heard the band before, but if you haven't I can tell you that they are somewhat reminiscent to AYREON, DREAM THEATER, Yngwie MALMSTEEN, NIGHTWISH and RHAPSODY. Complex, yet melodic Prog Metal blended with Neo-Classical hard rock, big choirs, classical music and magnificent instrumental passages. The musicianship and the songwriting are very good and the vocalist Russell Allen has a strong voice, so there's actually nothing to complain about. - Even though it took some time to get into this album, it's definitely one of the most interesting releases this year. Not a single bad track. Highly Recommended!

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Send comments to Greger (BETA) | Report this review (#7129) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, March 04, 2004

Review by FloydWright
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars This band, given to me on recommendation, admittedly took awhile to grow on me. In fact, when I bought their most recent album, The Odyssey, unlike some, it nearly put me off of SYMPHONY X altogether (though since then, that album has grown on me). Yet after that unfortunate first experience, I still held on to The Odyssey. And when I happened to find V: The New Mythology Suite, I couldn't help my curiosity at the gorgeous cover art. Now this looked a lot more refined than the rather overblown art of The Odyssey...two mysterious opposing figures, hooded, cloaked, faces painted, with glowing eyes--I couldn't resist. But would the album live up to the artwork? Well, aside from a few ill-considered areas, the answer turned out to be a resounding yes! SYMPHONY X had redeemed itself...with this amazing conceptual work, I realized their catalogue really was worthy of exploration.

This is one of those albums that kind of sneaks up on you, and while my earlier inclination was to give it 4 stars, I've come to realize over time that if any SYMPHONY X belongs in the collection of fans and non-fans alike, it's this one. While I certainly would not have this album compete against The Human Equation or The Dark Side of the Moon, the kinds of albums that one rarely ever finds, there is definitely enough here to keep the listener entertained. There are a surprising number of moments where I find myself backing up my CD player to hear a particularly cool riff or effect again. This band is certainly not lacking in talent; all of the musicians and vocalists are precise almost to a fault. At times, the technical prowess can make the album sound a bit mechanical, but if you can approach it without expecting the kind of emotional involvement you might get from an album with a more personal story to tell, you should manage well.

The story certainly is grandiose indeed: a strange reconception of mythology speculating on a supposed prior civilization of Atlantis that reached great heights before annihilating itself and nearly damning all of mankind with it--a mythology that supposes we are an experiment by energy beings gone badly awry! While there is a conceptual similarity to AYREON's Universal Migrator set, I would not accuse either band of getting too close to the other. Both stories are quite distinct from each other in the musical styles and particular plot points. The symphonic arrangements are stunning in the harder parts--don't scoff at this, but there are undertones of Metallica's S&M collaboration with Maestro Michael Kamen here, and I mean it in a good way.

In the softer parts, however, I find my usual quibble with SYMPHONY X--sometimes the band's vision overreaches the synthesizer technology available to them. While this problem seems much improved on V, sometimes it's still there. I've never (regardless of who uses it) been a fan of the Korg synth SYMPHONY X seems to like, and I lay a fair amount of the blame for the inadequacy of certain sounds--most particularly the brass sections--on the feet of this machine. Kudos, however, go to the pipe organ sound they use, which is probably the best thing the SYMPHONY X keyboardist Michael Pinnella has going for him. The ideas are good, so is the talent, but I admit sometimes I wish they'd get a new synth, or even if they can't afford a full orchestra, perhaps they could have a small number of session musicians handle problem instruments during the softer parts where other instruments can't help mask the synth issues. Still...if one can get accustomed to the synths of the 60s through 80s, where problems abounded even on the best of albums, I think it's quite possible to get past this and hear the album for what it is.

Highlights of this album include "Evolution", which features some amazing riffs from Michael Romeo, "Fallen", "Communion and the Oracle", "Egypt", but most of all "A Fool's Paradise", which to me has just about all that you could possibly ask for in a SYMPHONY X song. The closing song, "Rediscovery", is a very long closer (nearly 12 minutes!) for the album--but it doesn't ever drag like DREAM THEATER can. Perhaps the variety and rapid pace of SYMPHONY X's songs helps with this.

The only real mistake on the part of the band that I can't pin on a technological weakness is the choral arrangement of "Lacrymosa", which unfortunately hurts the wonderful "Death of Balance" that came before it. Despite repeated listening, "Lacrymosa" still seems rather laughable and out-of-place. This could have been rearranged in some way, with a different vocal approach by Russell Allen, or if not that, the vocal section could have perhaps been removed without hurting anything. Although after hearing the original "Lacrymosa" on Mozart's Requiem, I admit my opinion has softened some. SYMPHONY X is an acquired taste...but once the taste is acquired, you've got a masterpiece on your hands.

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Send comments to FloydWright (BETA) | Report this review (#7144) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, December 04, 2004

Review by TRoTZ
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Another great album from Symphony X, combining their progressive virtuous metal (with some doom influences and some remissness from power metal like their paced rhythms) with majestically classical music, particularly MOZART. The album is very consistent, with great grandiose melodies, great complex instrumental arrangements and performances, fairly good musical transitions, variety. A must to your ear.

The concept of the album is very fictional, in someway remembering Ayreon, in which it tells a story of the lost civilization of Atlantis, created by superior beings from cosmic space who started to create creatures. But something went wrong and several beasts were created. Among their creator, they (Dark side) were banished from Atlantis, till the day they went back and fought with the Good side in Atlantis, winning the war and affecting mankind beyond that, with dark forces surpassing the balance with good forces. But there is still hope and mankind will have an important play on that matter.

I don't find any weak tracks at all, from the beginning to the end the tracks have the same high quality with all the factors I described. But still, I would like to emphasize some tracks. Evolution is one of those, with a good melody with very complex guitar work. To appreciate also is the rhythm of Fallen and the progressive subtleness and beauty of Communication and The Oracle. I find in The Dance of Balance/Lacrimosa a memorable track, with psychedelic complex drumming creating a wonderful tense atmosphere leading to a soft organ crescendo followed by emotional chorus taken by Mozart. Mozart presence in the album is also patented in the great A Fool's Paradise, another highlight, with the classical composer's musical arrangements making the final bridge of the track and preceded by great and strong melody reinforced tremendously by a well-orchestrated chorus and with the powerful paced drumming. The final track, the great suite of the album, The New Mythology, has also its great moments, many transitions remembering DREAM THEATER but a la Symphony X, with its great chorus leading once again the emotion accomplished by the instrumental power.

Many ingredients make this progressive record a must to all progressive music lovers. Epic, classical, melodic, virtuous, powerful, diverse, in sum, great sonority, though not brilliantly original.

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Send comments to TRoTZ (BETA) | Report this review (#7147) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, January 21, 2005

Review by FishyMonkey
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Symphony X's finest. A nice concept album,but the real beauty lies in the excellent song writing and lyrics. Everything reeks of polish, and the songs are tight and entertaining. Symphony X has truly created a masterpiece here. Now, after listening to Twilight in Olympus with amazing songs like Smoke and Mirrors and Church of the Machine, and Divine Wings of Tragedy before, I doubted Symphony X could do it again. They did. They even improved in some ways even more on The Odyssey, although the album isn't as good as this one. Everything builds up so nicely, from the epic Rediscovery to the powerful song The Bird-Serpent War/Cataclysm. Wonderful stuff. Highlights are the two songs I just mentioned as well as Evolution, A Fool's Paradise which is awesome, Comunion and the Oracle and Death of Balance (although strange, great).

Weak points? Well, the segues are a bit worthless but don't really detract from the album. Absence of Light and Egypt sound a bit too much like other songs that did it better for me, although definitely not bad. Egypt is stil lgood, Absense of Light being..bearable. It's definitely the weakpoint of the album. Any other bad parts? Nope. The whole thign is epic in scope, builds up awesomely, if that's a word, to the awesome last song which NEVER gets boring all through it's twelve minutes. The only other song that has kept me entranced that's longer than 10 minutes is some Yes songs, Krimson songs, Opeth's The Drapery Falls and Finally Free from Dream Theater. An elite group indeed.

Excellent album, 4.4/5.

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Send comments to FishyMonkey (BETA) | Report this review (#7155) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, May 23, 2005

Review by horza
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars I have to thank Prog archives and one reason is this band and this album.Symphony X have taught me a valuable lesson.Seek and ye shall find.This album is in my opinion the bands highlight and a real tour de force.The standard of musicianship is stunning and the album has many gems including Evolution,Fallen and Egypt.To think I had never heard of them until a few weeks ago.I am now educating my immediate friends and showing them a band worthy of investigation.Symphony X-they rock!!Their is no weakness in the bands make-up that I can see.

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Send comments to horza (BETA) | Report this review (#47090) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, September 18, 2005

Review by Bj-1
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars Their best album, a more symphonic affair with a concept dealing with the myths of Atlantis and Egypt, bassist Thomas Miller quitted the band right before this one but got replaced with Mike LePond who does a great job here, though his style is less creative than Miller's. Drummer Jason Rullo returned for this album and does a faultless performance here. Musically, this is perhaps their most adventurous and atmospheric to date, featuring some of their strongest material ever. Notably the title track is a masterpiece and the rest of the album stand up to it well. "Absense of Light" is the only track here which I could consider "weak" overall. Otherwise, this is a great symphonic prog-metal album! 5/5

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Send comments to Bj-1 (BETA) | Report this review (#48483) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, September 26, 2005

Review by Gatot
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
5 stars When Neo Prog Meets Prog Met

"Gatot, I'm sure you would enjoy this album because some keyboard punches and melodies lend the nuances from early Marillion style .!", that's how my prog colleague down here introduced me with the band and this album couple of years ago. I did not purchase the CD yet because at the time I was so crazy with Rhapsody's third album "Dawn of Victory" and was amazed on how the orchestral arrangements were blended nicely with power metal music characterized with hard etched guitar riffs. Well, everybody in our local community of prog knew very well that I'm a great fan of early Marillion and they were very happy (and surprised!) that I could enjoy the music of Rhapsody. That's why they tried to influence me to purchase this CD. Couple of weeks later I purchased the CD and my reaction was :"Gee.!!! This is the kind of music I want to enjoy!!!". Yeah, they're right, there are some early Marillion styles in some musical segments spread around the tracks of this album.

This album became my favorite since the first time I spun it until now. And I don't know why I have not reviewed it yet at this site. As you know, prog is contagious. The only trigger that makes me writing this review is due to a new radio program at PRO 2 FM 105 in Jakarta where they feature progressive rock music for two hours every Friday. It's like a dream when last night I listened to "The Accolade" (Symphony X), "Never Learn To Fly" (bonus track, Japanese edition of Pain of Salvation's "Entropia"), Dream Theater and Planet X were featured in the radio program. Yeah man . long live progrock!. Well, sorry for the long introduction but it boils down into one thing, philosophically, that talking about prog music should also include the nuances, the climate, the surroundings (not only the music) which things build into one: delightful experience. That's why I need to share this with all of you to give a bit of background on subtleties pertinent to progrock music. And specific to last night surprise listening to prog on the air I was actually in nggeblak state of mind - it's basically a state when you feel comfortably numb enjoying the beauty of prog music. Keep on proggin' .!!!

Let's talk about this album per se .

First off - I love the artwork of this cover. It's simple and it's really a prog cover! Dunno why I always like the cover with people using mask or something like Jester (Script of Marillion). Illustration was done by Kazuo Hakamada and design by Tomoko Hakamada. Great! The music? Masterpiece! It does not give me a chance to breathe whenever I enjoy this album. I always spin this CD in its entirety because I really enjoy how the band brings their music dynamically from start of the album until finish. It blasts off with a great church organ and choir style of "Prelude" in a very high energy spectrum. This opening track creates wonderful space effects when I play in high volume (preferred). The double pedal bass drum played in fast tempo gives enough impression of power metal. It flows with a sudden silence followed with heavy riffs music combining guitar, drum and bass that remark the next rack "Evolution (The Grand Design)" . Those of you who are familiar with power metal style would love this track right away. The beauty of this song is the symphonic nature of keyboard sounds despite fast speed music at fore front. Russell Allen's vocal is powerful and pretty clean throughout this song. The interlude part which demonstrates a combination of Michael Romeo' guitar solo and Michael Pinnella keyboard is an excellent part.

Wonderful! The music continues seamlessly to soft keyboard work in the vein of neo prog music as intro part of "Fallen" (5:51). Oh man . this transition piece really kills me to the bone man! It then transforms into guitar riffs wonderfully. It's an interesting track. The music and lyrics during the singing part with "Tonight Darkness will shadow the light" is a memorable part. The short piece "Transcendence" (0:38) provides a bridge to an excellent neo prog part intro of "Communion and the Oracle" (7:45) . Again, the band tries to kill me with this wonderful melody combining piano, acoustic guitar, keyboard and violin. Nggeblak! . When Rusell Allen voice enters it gives a kind of Kansas music. This track is very accessible to many people, I think, because the music is not as heavy as typical progmet music. For those who love Kansas would definitely enjoy this track. The guitar solo and keyboard solo are stunning.

The heavy guitar riffs and symphonic keyboard sound bring "The Bird-Serpent War / Cataclysm" (3:59) in a dynamic style by maintaining the core style of Symphony X's music: keyboard at background. The albums gives a chance to musical break with relatively mellow opening part of "On the Breath of Poseidon" (3:04) which has some theatrical nuance - as if we're watching Lord of the Rings movie. As the name implies the band gives a truly good emulation of eastern music using a kind of acoustic guitar / mandolin in "Egypt" (7:04) . It's a beautifully composed music that gives the album a rich variation of textures. "Death of Balance / Lacrymosa" (3:42) is another bridge that gives another theatrical impact with great combination of guitar riffs, powerful bass lines (Michael LePond) and energetic drumming by Jason Rullo. Another beautifully composed instrumental track with excellent choral section, in church style.

The remaining tracks "Absence of Light" (4:58) (great pulsating keyboard solo backed with heavy riffs), "A Fool's Paradise" (5:48) (relatively fast tempo track), "Rediscovery pt I and II" (great concluding track with relatively long duration) are all excellent tracks.

It's a bit hard to find which part this album lacks because everything has been crafted to perfection. The only problem - most probably - if you don't get used to heavier side of prog music like Dream Theater, Shadow Gallery, Pain of Salvation, Opeth, Evergrey, etc. But if you like such bands like I do, you would definitely categorize this album as a full five stars album! Yeah, it's highly recommended. For those who are familiar with neo prog would be comfortable with some segments this album offers. Keep on proggin' ..!

"Choose the way, five paths there for you to find turn the page, the question lies between the lines can we change?" - Rediscovery - The New Mythology.

Peace on earth and mercy mild - GW

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Send comments to Gatot (BETA) | Report this review (#69823) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, February 18, 2006

Review by AtLossForWords
PROG REVIEWER
2 stars Highly acclaimed follow up to Twilight In Olympus. Is it as really as good as it is believed

V: The New Mythology Suite is another highly acclaimed album from New Jersey metallers Symphony X. The album is as the name implies, a concept album about myths with the diversity of Greece to Egypt. The album also touches on more serious concepts such as evolution and the fall of mankind to Earth. Not a bad lyrical concept, but certainly not the most serious.

I had high expectations considering this is the follow up to my favorite Symphony X album, Twilight In Olympus and it's equally impressive predacessor The Divine Wings of Tragedy. This album doesn't seem to have the same compositional intent as the previous two. How does this bode for the New Jersey boys.

Compared to Twilight In Olympus the album is a slower paced, but heavier effort. There's still some speedy matierial, but the emphasis of composing on this album seems to be taking slower tempos grooves to showcase more of a metal influence. The vocals from Russell Allen reflect this as well. Allen's performance is more aggressive than previous albums. It's good to see that the entire band was heading in the same direction, but was this a good direction?

Romeo's performance is key to any Symphony X album. As I said earlier this album is a slower paced and heavier album. This is most indicitive by Romeo's performance. Romeo use the lower range of his guitar much more on this album than previous ones. Songs like Egypt, a Fool's Paradise, and Rediscovery of course showcase the best of Romeo's talents on this album. On the other hand songs like Abscence of Light and Fallen are unimpressive. There's some strong solo work different from previous albums possibly because of the rythymnic difference, but that doesn't necessarily mean the solos are any better than previous albums.

Pinella's performance is key to any Symphony X album as well. His production was definately better on this album than previous ones. Sadly his playing did not see such improvement. Pinella uses creative synth sounds, and once again displays incredible functionality as a keyboardist playing so many roles. The weakeness is his lack of variation. I can't distinguish between well...any of Pinella's solos. He has good chops, good synth sounds and feel, but lacks the lead creativity.

Michael LePond takes over for Thomas Miller on this album. He had some big shoes to fill. He dissapointed me and didn't fill them. Previous Symphony X albums had excellent bass fills and solos by former bassist Thomas Miller. LePond is unable to do such things. Other than the tapping spot in Egypt, I find LePond to be devoid of Miller's creative and technical talents. LePond was the weakest part of the album musically.

This album also features the return of drummer Jason Rullo. (Thomas Walling played on Twilight In Olympus) Rullo does a solid metal performance. It's not the greatest or most variant performance by a drummer, but it's more than good enough to suit the band. He does some flashy fills, but generally keeps the beats to solid metal styles. Ballads however are a different story. Rullo's performance on ballads like Communion and the Oracle feature his strongest work on the album.

The production is terrible. Romeo's guitar is weak tonally, but too strong in the mix. A more detailed explanation would say that Romeo's guitar is overdistorted and lacks suffiecient equalization. The lows are too strong and the highs and mids are far too weak. The guitar is also too loud for it's poor tone quality and covers up the other parts of the band. The keyboards sound better than any previous Symphony X album, the lone production achievement. The bass is not present in the mix, and the drums sound too much like a typical metal recording. Bad production, but good keyboards.

It's a two star effort. The production could have boosted it to three easily. Why, because the way a band sounds is important. Good players always prevail, but production can always help them. The album lacks suffiecent musical quality for more stars. Other than the epic Rediscovery, the creative and impressive tracks are few and far between.

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Send comments to AtLossForWords (BETA) | Report this review (#74347) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, April 07, 2006

Review by Melomaniac
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars My favorite Symphony X album, followed closely by "The Divine Wings of Tragedy" and "The Odyssey". Of all the "symphonic power prog metal" (whew!!!) bands, Symphony X are undoubtedly the best!!! (Dream Who???) Russell Allen is among my all-time favorite vocalists. The feeling he has, the tone of his voice (far from being as cheesy and annoying as James Labrie (isn't brie cheese???)), his various intonations and complete mastery of his vocal chords surpass all. He can go from agressive growls to a soft melodic voice, from low to high pitch (without sticking too long or too often in the higher registers of his voice). A singer in the traditions of Journey and Foreigner, only better (he IS that good!!!). Symphony X are as competent, if not moreso, than Dream Theater, the main difference being that Symphony X write songs for the sake of songs, not as a pretext to show off their amazing dexterity more than needed (read tolerated).

Now with the album...

Not much to say except this : I cannot find something that displeases me. The album is good from start to finish, the running order is perfect (an improper order of songs can make the difference between a good and a not-so-good album), the production is great, the musicianship flawless, the songwriting excellent, the storyline great, the artwork magnificent. I love every single moment of this album and never get tired of listening to it.

For fans of Rush, Yngwie Malmsteen, Dream Theater, Rhapsody, etc...

Symphony X's masterpiece for the time being... I cannot wait for the new album to come out !!! Definitely an essential !

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Send comments to Melomaniac (BETA) | Report this review (#81438) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, June 18, 2006

Review by sleeper
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars V: The New Mythology Suite is the fifth album by Symphony X and their first concept album. The concept revolves around the story of Atlantis, Egypt and that all knowledge gained today is a rediscovery of the past Atlantian knowledge, the good as well as the evil. On this album there is a couple of changes to the bands line-up. First, drummer Tom Walling has left the band and replaced by...... Jason Rullo, the man that vacated the stool for Walling in the first place. Of more significance is that bass player Thomas Miller, in my opinion one of the best bassists in prog metal, left the band after the Twilight In Olympus tour, to be replaced by Michael LePond.

This is a very good album, Symphony X's best and certainly my favourite, but it suffers from a number of ups and downs throughout. As they proved on the previous album, Twilight In Olympus, the band is better at writing songs that are based on stories and novels than there own fantasy by some way and this is one of the biggest improvements over their previous efforts. Variety between the songs has increased massively as well, something that they could be accused of lacking previously, and this has shown up most in the compositions of the album, making it flow and work as a whole, something that is very important for a good concept album.

The bad sides to this album are that the drumming of Rullo hasn't improved in his time off from the band. Its not that its bad but its not very inventive or particularly virtuoso, it just does the job required without sounding like it was trying to match the performance of Pinnella and Romeo. However, were the drumming is passable, if not stunning, the bass playing is the biggest fall in performance on this album. As I said earlier, Thomas Miller was an extremely good bass player and probably the unsung hero of prog metal in the 1990's, but LePond's performance on here is patchy at best. Songs like Communion And The Oracle, Egypt and Rediscovery Part 2: The New Mythology show that he can be very inventive and create's some very memorable and interesting bass lines, fills and solo's. A lot of songs on the rest of the album show that he is very unimaginative, playing a fast but dull bass line that follows the rhythm without any pretence at creativity, like he's just along for the ride. I can only hope he improves on subsequent albums.

As fans of Symphony X will know, Michael Romeo is the creative force behind the band and here he really was on top form, where his compositions move between fast and slow, complex and simple with ease and work really well. His guitar playing is brilliant, the openings to Egypt and Communion And The Oracle are highly memorable pieces that sound brilliant and really get the attention. Michael Pinnella's work is highly unique, for him, on this album. There was no change in style but he made constant use of string/orchestral samples that filled out the whole feeling of the album brilliantly, to an extent that I have only heard done a few times before or since (and one of those was his). The tone's of his keyboards are far more diverse than usual as well, a welcomed improvement on the last couple of albums.

Once again Russell Allen gives a stunning performance that really highlights his ability as a metal singer, full of power and theatrics but with a pleasing timbre. The concept of the album (based on Atlantis) works very well. It fits well with the band, who often write fantasy lyrics, but without being cheesy. However I feel that the close to the story is not that good, the idea that all were doing is regaining the lost knowledge after the fall of Atlantis, doesn't seem to fit too well.

Overall I'll give this 4 stars. If Thomas Miller had stayed with the band I don't doubt that I would have given this 5 stars as the bass lines would have been far better, but Michael LePond is not as creative and at times just plane boring. Symphony X's best album yet all the same.

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Send comments to sleeper (BETA) | Report this review (#88946) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, September 04, 2006

Review by 1800iareyay
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars In 2000, Symphony X, hot off the dual successes of Divine Wings of Tragedy and Twilight In Olympus delivered their greatest work yet. V is a concept album about the history and mythology of Atlantis. I figure they named the album V since its the fifth studio album by the band. To this day that remains my biggest (and really only) problem with the album. The boys could write a rich story line inventing a religion but they couldn't muster up a few words for a proper title? No matter. Like with all albums, the importance is with the music (duh). The album contains elements of the beauty of past albums mixed with the heaviness of the follow up The Odyssey.

The concept is pulled off without a hitch though you will probably need out check a web site to fully understand the meanings of the concept. Russell Allen dazzles with his Dio- esque operatic screams, LePond fits right in with the boys with his great basswork (though he lacks some of Miller's aggressive bite), Pinella's keyboards are rich without being dominant, Rullo dazzles without showing off, and of course, Michael Romeo's fretwork is godlike.

Highlights of the album are Fallen, Evolution (Grand Design), the final track, and Communion and the Oracle, though every track is at worst very solid. V should and hopefully one day will take its place alongside DT's Scenes From a Memory and Queensryche's Operation Mindcrime as a masterpiece prog metal concept record. Fans of prog metal must have this record.

Grade: A

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Send comments to 1800iareyay (BETA) | Report this review (#101520) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, December 03, 2006

Review by OpethGuitarist
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars A conundrum.

This album I believe is different than the rest of their material. It's much heavier, much less dramatic, and more straightforward, which I believe makes it better. It's technical, but not as over-the-top as other albums have been.

Now despite this, the band retains many of the same qualities they have on other records, qualities I'd just assume they get rid of. Most of the album feels more like an entertainment show than a music record. Too gaudy. Cut the fat and you would have a good base of music to expand upon and make better. Admittedly there are some very cringe worthy sections that are more or less love/hate. Those who associate themselves with this quality of music I am sure would not be disappointed, however for me, it's just too much at times. Highlights for me were Communion and the Oracle and Egypt.

For those who do not like Dream Theater, Symphony X's V might be a good place to start into prog metal, but overall it is not a band I have ever been too thrilled about. I think it is the band's best album, and a great place to introduce yourself to their material.

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Posted Thursday, December 21, 2006

Review by b_olariu
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars This band is for some years an appreciate name in prog metal genre. The technique of guitarist Michael Romeo is well known by everybody, thats why he has here the posibility to show us what he can do. A concept album was the answer, to show everybody whwre they stand now in prog metal music. Well, this album is dangerous (in a good way), because has an musical arsenal like no other band. It's clear that Symphony X don't execute, they play every note from the soul.The ideas on this album are outstanding, and with a continuity that envy every band.Symphony X are a mature band, and the album is full of unexpected (musicaly speaking). Strong pieces are Egypt (man, what a piece of music), On the breath of Poseidon, Absence of light. In the end a 5 star album and band. Highly recomended band and album.

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Send comments to b_olariu (BETA) | Report this review (#114853) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, March 11, 2007

Review by Zitro
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars A very pleasant surprise in the progressive metal genre and a band I'm interested in discovering after finding the excellence in this album. The music is not exactly the cloning of Dream Theater's music. This music is purely symphonic, it just sounds as if all the songs are classical music songs done with heavy electric guitars, keyboards, and was given a metal drummer. To enhance the classical feel, choirs, strings are present. Another aspect in which this music differs from Dream Theater's is that it is based on Power Metal.

The album starts with choirs, symphonic arrangements and heavy metal guitars which lead to the first real song of the album and the best: Evolution , a flawless power metal piece with fantastic vocal harmonies, perfect use of dynamics, and some of the best rhythmic guitar I've heard in a while. The song ends with a majestic guitar harmony that reminds me of Brian May Fallen uses the church organ and some choirs, and at a point reminds me of Dream Theater due alternating guitar and keyboard solos. Communion is mellower and probably not as exciting, but if the album had only a bunch of heavy songs, it would have been hard to listen all the way through. It is still a good piece with a very classical feel that gets better in the second half. The Bird is another heavy piece in the vein of "Fallen" but not as interesting musically-wise. On The Breath of Poseidon is a soft instrumental with a nice buildup in the beginning. Egypt starts very similar to Opeth with acoustic guitars playing on scales typical of that band and develops into a great rocker with wonderful guitar riffs and rhythms as well as excellent vocal harmonies. I dare to say that this song brings back the greatness of "Evolution". Death of Balance is another instrumental, more bombastic and way better than the previous one. It features another guitar harmony reminiscent of the one at the end of "Evolution". Absence of Light is just a good metal song, nothing more but the following A Fool's Paradise is a fast-paced symphonic metal song that pulsates with a lot of energy. The arrangements are very well done, the music is varied, and technically-speaking, this song impresses. Rediscovery starts with a beautiful melodic segue, and turns into a lengthy song with both heavy and mellow sections. It is coherent and never dull. A great closer of this concept album.

I recommend this album to anyone who enjoys power metal and symphonic music. If you don't enjoy power metal, at least give this album a try ... it may change your mind.

2. Evolution (The Grand Design) (A) 3. Fallen (B+) 5. Communion and the Oracle (B) 6. The Bird-Serpent War / Cataclysm (C+) 7. On the Breath of Poseidon (C+) 8. Egypt (A-) 9. Death of Balance / Lacrymosa (A-) 10. Absence of Light (C+) 11. A Fool's Paradise (B+) 13. Rediscovery - The New Mythology (B+)

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Send comments to Zitro (BETA) | Report this review (#123451) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, May 26, 2007

Review by Flucktrot
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars Not being a huge metalhead, I was pretty skeptical about this album, especially after seeing pictures of these guys! Of course, the high ratings from fellow proggers was more than enough to overcome any superficial hesitation. If I had to describe Symphony X (especially on this album), I would say they are a cross between Dream Theater, Kansas, with a hint of Queen. A year ago, I would not have guessed that a hybrid such as this could be possible.

There are few albums where I don't get bored or my mind wanders for at least a bit, but this is one of those. Symphony X do a great job of changing time signatures, experimenting with different keyboard and guitar effects, and rarely falling into generic, double-bass-drum metal. Here are some of the highlights (though the entire album is very interesting and well-done from beginning to end):

Prelude. It's short, but a killer way to start this album. Admittedly, it took many listens to feel this way. I wouldn't want five minutes of this, but it certainly get me oriented for what's to come!

Communion and the Oracle. Just an excellent mellow song that is well-placed and allows Allen's vocal range to shine.

On the Breath of Poseidon/Egypt/The Death of Balance (Lacrymosa). I view these three songs as a mini-suite (perhaps not lyrically, but certainly musically for me). Great melodies, instrumentation, imagery, and creativity throughout here. Hats off for the middle section of Egypt: spacy guitar, wriggling baseline, and fascinating chord progressions. Lacrymosa shows some of the Queen influence (guitar effects and vocal choirs). I especially love Rullo's drums in the middle section--lots of chaotic clanging to drive home the abruptness of the music.

Rediscovery--The New Mythology. Crank this up and hold on tight--the ride will be 12 minutes of unrelenting prog magic. The whole band is firing on all cylinders throughout. If ever wonder who my favorite metal vocalist may be, I put this song on and the case is closed: Allen is pure power (though never overextending his ability). Kudos as well to Pinella: the blasting church organ is awesome in the louder parts, and the moving, ever-present-but-not-overpowering piano really fits the emotion and flow to the pensive bits. Toward the end, there is a freaky jam that if I close my eyes I swear is played by Kansas, finished off by a majestic choral refrain from earlier in the album.

If you like creative writing, exciting, fist-pumping material with symphonic flourishes, then this is right up your alley. If you prefer the slow build style, then not so much. I certainly can see the Dream Theater comparisons, but I cannot for the life of me see how people view Symphony X as DT knockoffs, given the subject matter (mythology), the classical breaks, and the onslaught of power that is Russell Allen. One of my best purchases!

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Send comments to Flucktrot (BETA) | Report this review (#135258) | Review Permalink
Posted Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Review by progrules
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars This by far best album SX ever made is a very interesting one. I'm not sure if I can call this a concept album, it certainly sounds like one but I can not find any conformation of this. Doesn't really matter, main thing it's that it's fantastic and highly amusing. It's one of those (like f.i. More Grains or Alone by CLEPSYDRA, or Generation 13 by SAGA) you have to hear as a whole. It's like one complete story, the songs are seperated by interludes, very nicely done. This to me proves the brilliance of SX. it's a pity they didn't make more albums like this. This is by far their best effort, at least where the entire album is concerned. My favourite parts are:Egypt, A fool's paradise and Rediscovery but the rest is hardly any less.

So this will score 5 stars, a great example of a fantastic overall performance

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Posted Friday, October 05, 2007

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars A Symphonic Rhapsody

"V" appears to have been a popular name for an album in the year 2000, with Spock's Beard also using the letter to signify their fifth album. The more significant sub-title here through is "The new mythology suite", signifying Symphony X's first complete concept album.

The signs are all positive in terms of a prog classic, with a continuing theme of ancient mythology, good vs. evil etc., plus we have a collection of tracks varying in length from just over a minute up to a 13 minute finale. The sleeve imagery too is pure prog, with a hooded man reflecting in negative in a mirror located in a stormy desert.

On a more prosaic level, the power house section of the band has changed since the previous album, with drummer Jason Rullo (the band's original drummer) returning, and Michael LePond taking over bass duties. While the rhythm section is perhaps more important for band such as Symphony X than for bands of other genres, reassuringly the core vocals/keyboards/guitar section remains unaltered.

Listening to the opening "Prelude", you could be forgiven for thinking you had picked up an album by Rhapsody (of Fire) by mistake. The operatic chorale which introduces the album is very like the overtures which adorn their albums. Likewise the double paced drumming, mythological lyrics, and strong melody of the following "Evolution (The Grand design)" would be entirely at home on any Rhapsody album.

The story, which essentially seeks to blend the myths of various ancient civilisations together then add a science fiction element, is told through the lyrics, with brief commentaries being added in the accompanying booklet. An example of these commentaries for the superb 8 minute piece "Communion and the Oracle" reads ".unfortunately, not all were interested in the Ways of Justice, and those of the night gathered to plot the elimination of the great law of One and the death of Ma'at".

As whole, the music here is a wonderful blend of Rhapsody, Dream Theater and Blackmore's Rainbow, the Rainbow elements being emphasised by the Dio like vocals of Russell Allen. Some tracks work better than others, the difference usually being down to the strength of the composition rather than the performance. "Fallen" for example is exemplary when it comes to the arrangement, which includes wonderful synth strings, but the song does not have the strength of is peers on the album.

The strongest track, certainly in terms of vocal performance, is "Egypt", which incorporates a strangely ethereal chorus while maintaining the metallic principles to which the band subscribe. The bass playing is particularly notable here, Michael Lepond (the band has three Michaels in total) adding some wonderfully strong Chris Squire like vibrations. Indeed, this is a good time to mention that albums such as this demand to be heard at a decent volume on a good quality hi-fi, not simply squeezed through a set of PC speakers where the listener is deprived of half the content.

The album cumulates in the 13+ minute two part finale "Rediscovery" which effectively brings together every style, sound and effect which has appeared so far. Romeo and Pinnella throw in a guitar and keyboard duel as the track reaches is climax and the band, oblivious to the chaos all around them, disappear beneath the waves. Well not quite, but that's pretty much how the album concludes!

The tracks are linked together to form a whole, sometimes through segue tracks, sometimes they fit together well anyway. The most notable of the segues is Michael Romeo's three minute instrumental "On the breath of Poseidon". Although he is the band's guitarist, this is primarily a symphonic keyboards extravaganza with classical tones.

The album is liberally embellished with references from classical music, including Bartok, Mozart, Verdi and Bach. These references are not explicitly credited, something the band later acknowledged they should perhaps have done. In their defence, they (with some justification) say that such references are usually obvious.

In all, a wonderfully coherent work which sees Symphony X mastering the concept album with great confidence. Of all the Symphony X albums, this may be the best one to try first for those reticent about their genre. Recommended.

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Send comments to Easy Livin (BETA) | Report this review (#151688) | Review Permalink
Posted Monday, November 19, 2007

Review by Mellotron Storm
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars 4.5 stars.This is my favourite SYMPHONY X record so far. It is heavier overall than the others, but also not as fast paced. It fits my tastes more that's all. This is a concept album about "Atlantis". Interesting that while they were working on this recording both Romeo & Allen took part in Ayreon's "Flight Of The Migrator" album. As Easy Livin mentions, in the year 2000 we had two records entitled "V". SPOCK'S BEARD's fifth album and SYMPHONY X's fifth record. What seems strange to me is the fact that both bands were on the same record label, and both have almost the same background picture of gold desert sands with a black & red sky on the front covers. Odd.

"Prelude" is a Neo-Classical intro with the vocals to match. "Evolution (The Grand Design)" opens with heavy, fast paced riffs.The vocals almost sound distant, but they sound great. The background synths are a nice touch. Check out the guitar solo after 3 minutes that is followed by some killer riffs. This song blends into "Fallen". It opens with keys as a heavy sound slowly starts to rise up. A powerful sound is the result as vocals come in.The keys are swirling 3 1/2 minutes in followed by some blistering guitar. Light keys to end it. "Transcendence" is more Classical music like "Prelude". "Communion And The Oracle" is one of my top three favs on this album. I like the piano intro as drums and acoustic guitar provide a really nice sound. Vocals 1 1/2 minutes in are restrained in this mid- paced tune.This is just so tasteful. "The Bird-Serpent War / Cataclysm" features heavy riffs and background synths. Nice guitar solo later. "On The Breath Of Poseidon" has a classical intro before pounding drums and synths take it hostage. "Egypt" is another one of my top three on here. Probably my favourite actually with those Eastern sounds coming through the heavy soundscape. The chorus is incredible with the lighter vocals. Some outstanding bass as well. After 4 1/2 minutes the guitar is simply amazing.

"Death Of Balance / Lacrymosa" begins with a classical intro that is replaced by a punishing passage of riffs and background synths. Vocal harmonies with synths end it. "Absence Of Light" has a good galloping sound reminding me of IRON MAIDEN. The guitar and keys are fantastic ! A blistering guitar solo after 3 minutes. "A Fool's Paradise" is a dark, heavy and uptempo track. Good song. It calms down late with some beautiful melodic guitar. The pastoral mood continues with "Rediscovery(Segue)". "Rediscovery (Part II)-The New Mythology" is the longest track at almost 12 minutes.The guitar and vocals sound so good on this track. The synths and drumming can't be overlooked either. I know some feel this should have been the solo filled, exciting finale, but I love this song. My final top three track. There is some heaviness later, and it's not without it's solos,it just doesn't blow the doors off that's all.

A more mature offering from the band that I personally really like.

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Posted Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Review by UMUR
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator
4 stars V - The New Mythology Suite is the fifth album from neo classical US power metal band Symphony X. It must be considered their most progressive album to date, as emphasis is put on technically challenging riffing and even grander symphonic arrangements than earlier in their career. V - The New Mythology Suite is a concept album about the myth of Atlantis and most of the songs seque into each other or are bridged by small arranged classical pieces. All the classical pieces are variants of the main theme which we are introduced to in the first song Prelude. A typical move in classical music which Symphony X are very influenced by.

The music is unmistakably Symphony X with lots of heavy guitar riffs and classical guitar/ keyboard runs and on top of that the powerful vocals from Russel Allen. One of the good things about Symphony X is that even though their music is in the power metal style itīs much heavier than the average power metal band. They really have some chrushingly heavy riffs. What was even more exciting at the time of this release is that they were incorporating more and more progressive elements into their music. There are still many basic power metal ideas in the music which is best examplified in the opening when the the guitar, drums and bass kicks in. It almost sounds like something Rhapsody could have done.

Evolution (The Grand Design) is a great power metal tune that is really powerful and a real Symphony X classic. Note that allthough all of the characteristic elements from Symphony X music is here youīll hear that the keyboards are much more symphonic than on previous albums. The keyboard sound borders imitating a classical orchestra at times. Fallen is the next track and itīs actually a pretty challenging technical song. There are lots of really heavy guitar riffs in odd time signatures ( at least thatīs how it sounds like to me. But Iīm no expert, so it might be 4/4 played a bit differently). The melody isnīt as memorable as the general Symphony X song but itīs still a very good track. Transcendence is a short interlude of classical music based on the mythology theme and it works as a bridge to the next song which is Communion and the Oracle. This is a very beautiful progressive metal song and itīs a clear highlight on V - The New Mythology Suite. Note the many beautiful and varied guitar solos from Michael Romeo in this song. His playing reaches new hights here.

The Bird-Serpent War / Cataclysm is another powerful song. Listen to the first minute of that song. Thatīs heavy stuff. Itīs almost a ripp-off of The Mirror by Dream Theater but who cares as long as itīs played as itīs done here ?On the Breath of Poseidon is a variation on the mythology theme which was introduced to us in the first song on the album. Symphonic instrumental music. It works as a bridge to the next song.Egypt is a great diverse song with some middle eastern notes to match the lyrics.

Death of Balance / Lacrymosa is another instrumental interlude. It starts out with technical playing and ends with a choir arrangement not unlike the one which starts the title track from The Divine Wings of Tragedy.Absence of Light is together with the next song A Fool's Paradise my least favoured songs here. There are lots of great soloing as usual but the songs are just below par when you compare them to the other songs on the album. These two songs are fillers. Rediscovery is a short interlude with some beautiful classical guitar and keyboard interplay.Rediscovery pt. II - The New Mythology is an almost 12 minute long epic track. Itīs not my favorite here but itīs allright.

The musicianship is excellent all the way round and that includes the returned Jason Rullo on drums who I have complained about before. This time his playing is much better than on earlier albums from Symphony X. I was hoping Tom Walling who played on Twilight in Olympus would continue on the drums for Symphony X but Jason Rullo apparently returned after his break from the band. As always main composer and guitarist Michael Romeo has to be mentioned for his genious playing style. He is such a heavy guitarist but he also masters melody well.

The production is not to my liking. If I have to be frank I must say that itīs ruined my excitement over this album for many years which is too bad. Itīs not that you canīt hear what is happening but itīs the way the instruments sound. Itīs hard to explain but I donīt like it.

V - The New Mythology Suite is yet another brilliant album from Symphony X and even though itīs not my favorite Symphony X album and I seldom listen to it, Iīll still rate it 4 stars. Symphony X continues to develop their sound with this their fifth album. But it doesnīt really prepare you for whatīs to come. Their next album The Odyssey sees Symphony X return to a more simple heavy approach ( except for the title track) which is much more to my liking than the symphonic grand sound they have on V - The New Mythology Suite. I canīt wait to review that one.

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Posted Friday, June 20, 2008

Review by Ivan_Melgar_M
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Prog Specialist
4 stars Until today I had refused to review any Prog Metal album, being that if I didn't had anything good to say about a whole sub-genre, most surely the problem should be in my personal taste; but just found "V: The New Mythology Suite" by SYMPHONY X and must honestly say that I'm impressed.

The album combines elements of Metal with excellent Symphonic structures, and that's something I'm able to understand or even like, this doesn't mean I became an instant fan of the genre, but it's good to see there's some Prog Metal that I'm able to listen with pleasure.

From the operatic "Overture" it's easy to know you are in front of something different, all those unnecessary solos and contests of egomaniac guitar pyrotechnics are left aside for a coherent structure, loved the opening.

"Evolution (The Grand Design) marks a change, were in definitive inside Metal territory which somehow reminds me of the galloping style of IRON MAIDEN and their obsession for Ancient Egyptian obsession, but designed in such way that the Symphonic component is almost as important, of course you will find some fast guitars, but in small dose doesn't harm, and at the end there's not Prog Metal without guitars. The vocals are simply impressive, excellent choral work, another high point.

"Fallen" starts slower than the previous track with a keyboard that leads to an "in crescendo" guitar work, the drumming is extremely accurate, but this time the vocals by Russell Allen are a bit over the top, like he's making an incredible effort not to leave the Metal zone in which sounds a bit less confident than in Symphonic territory.

"Transcendence" is just a pompous intro (those we like so much) for "Communion and the Oracle" which starts with a soft guitar pretty unusual in this kind of music that sends us to less familiar territory, but again it's nice, I can understand why some hardcore metalheads don't like this album too much, because it's as Symphonic ads metallic.

But the most interesting aspect of this track is how it evolves, linking every section with the next one, in such way you almost don't feel the dramatic changes, with Michael Pinella and Michael Romeo doing an outstanding work.

"The Bird-Serpent War / Cataclysm" begins harder than all the previous with the expected (even when uncommon in this album) distorted guitar, again that reminiscence of IRON MAIDEN pulls me towards the most familiar an pleasant sound for a non Metal fan as me. But what impresses me more is the fantastic synth work.

Somebody please stop the world, I'm listening Prog Metal and I like it, "In the Breath of Poseidon" is full of pompous and ancient atmospheres with soft instrumental bridges to link the harder sections making the gap between them less evident, simply delightful.

"Egypt" as expected by the name is mysterious but frantic at the same time, two concepts that usually are not easy to combine are managed with enough dexterity to make them sound as natural partners, again the vocal work is amazing. Of course the soft piano closing section was a total surprise for me.

"Death of Balance / Lacrymosa" defies all what I thought I knew about Metal, the aggressive guitars blending with traditional piano in the most Classical sense is brilliant, the controlled cacophony is almost pleasant, reminding me of a harder version of ELP, but the surprises don't end, another amazing choral section proves me that SYMPHONY X is different than most of the bands of the genre..Vive la différence"

Despite "Absence of Light" is the harder song of the album and clearly more oriented towards what I could expect from a metal album, can't say I dislike it, the elaborate vocal work makes it easy to digest even by a person who usually won't listen distorted guitars unless is forced.

"A Fool's Paradise" starts frantic and breathtaking, for the second time seems like Russell Allen does too much effort when trying to be a metal singer instead of a Symphonic Metal singer, but when someone fails to match ,my taste, another member rescues the song, in this case Pinella with his impeccable keyboards. Around the middle, Allen recovers the calm and everything matches perfectly again, specially when the chorus enter and during a Bach reminiscent organ section...Loved the song.

"Rediscovery" is the short and softer interlude that places the audience in mood for the final epic, sadly is too short, I believe they could had exploited it much more.

The almost 12 minutes epic "Rediscovery pt. II - The New Mythology" is the cherry in the top of the cake, the band jumps from one style, mood and atmosphere to another one with absolute coherence but at the same time in a very dramatic and radical way, always linking every section with an accurate bridge usually classical or Baroque, sometimes is Bach, in this case is Mozart, another high point.

Now, is time for my biggest problem, I really enjoyed the album but not enough to classify it as an essential masterpiece of Progressive Rock, so five stars are out of my book, but less than four would be unfair and lack of coherence with what I wrote.

Now I will get "The Odyssey" and "The Divine Wings of Tragedy" to convince myself that this is not a mirage and that I really like SYMPHONY X.

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Posted Sunday, July 20, 2008

Review by LiquidEternity
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars If The Divine Wings of Tragedy was the album where Symphony X began to stretch their legs (hope you didn't expect me to say wings there. Too redundant), then V is the album where the band suddenly realized a way to make interesting, unique neoclassical progressive power metal. They are not a band that progresses a terrible much. In fact, they stick to their tricks pretty faithfully. This album, though, was built for such tricks and ideas, and it all meshes together in a way that I don't find it ever to again with the band, at least as of 2008.

Where the previous album was mixed and mastered fairly poorly, this CD sounds great, and even plays around with purposefully muddy songs early one, which make the crisp ones at the end sound absolutely magnificent. The levels of noodling are down on this album, at least as far as the band's usual allotment of half the song for solos and unisons. The keyboards also end up playing, on the whole, many more patches of actual agreeable sonic quality. The end result of these changes result in an album that, though likely indisputably cheesy, can be taken seriously and enjoyed as a high caliber release by a band that could have mucked around in power metal their whole career and probably been okay.

The flow between the songs, I must add, is beautiful. Some bands try to string together songs on their CDs, and the end result is mildly painful. Here, though, we get a clear progression, aided by some breathtakingly beautiful segues (another prog trick that is often used poorly, leading to awkward filler). We get the picture through listening to this that the instrumental bits correspond with un-narrated action, in a way. The presence of many bits of classical music throughout give the music a sense of lasting quality, even though it may not be necessarily so. I need to mention, too, the fine power of Sir Russel Allen. His voice is the only thing that really sets Symphony X apart from a slew of other progressive metal bands. The sheer force and range of his vocal abilities can be downright staggering.

Songs worth extra mentions are The Death of Balance / Lacrymosa, a semi-instrumental that many consider to be Symphony X's answer to Dream Theater's The Dance of Eternity. Needless to say, even without really stacking the two against each other, The Death of Balance / Lacrymosa is a wildly drummed, complex piece of music. My favorite track on here is A Fool's Paradise, with its clever inclusion of Dies Irae and some bouncy classical string hits, while being stacked on a rapidly moving progressive metal tune. And, of course, Russel Allen sings his heart out here.

All in all, I'd vouch for this as Symphony X's best album. When listened to as a whole, it's a bit one sided, a bit repetitive in terms of styles and sounds, but very good. If you're a fan of progressive metal or even just progressive rock and are interested in what kind of high powered instrumentation is appearing these days, this is a very good album to look at.

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Posted Sunday, September 28, 2008

Review by J-Man
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars People often compare SYMPHONY X to DREAM THEATER and other prog metal bands, but I can't see the relation. SYMPHONY X is much heavier, more neo-classical-type-metal, and has more agressive lyrics than DT. So beware DT fans like me: just because you like prog metal, it doesn't mean you'll like SYMPHONY X quite as much. This is their most critically-acclaimed album, but is not my favorite of theirs. It basically retells the story of Atlantis in a very interesting way. I'm not a huge SX fan, and the vocals are a little too much like power metal for me, but then again that's kind of what SX are. I love most of the music, and the musicians have an immense aount of skill, however to listen to the whole album is where the poblem begins. All of the music sounds very similar, and it's not because it's a concept album. There are really no acoustic parts, slow parts, or emotional parts of V. It all has the same power metal sound, which is fine, but really isn't at all what FATES WARNING or DREAM THEATER sounds like.

Basically V is a great album for a power metal fan, but could dissapoint the typical prog rock or prog metal fan because of the lack of emotional and slower parts. If you really want good SX go for The Divine Wings of Tragedy first.

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Posted Sunday, November 30, 2008

Review by ZowieZiggy
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars If you fancy cliché concept albums, combined with metal music then I guess that the music featured on this work will be of major interest to you. If on top of this, super fast metal lines are your cup of tea, I'm sure that you will be enchanted.

I would be much more cautious about this release than most of my fellow reviewers. But I am mot frankly a fan of the metal genre. There are some fine melodic chords during ''Evolution'' but most of this album sounds pretty much alike.

There is no question of course about the skills and talent of the musicians (of which Michael Romeo is probably the best one). The most prog track from this album is the keys oriented ''Transcendence''. It lasts for almost forty.seconds.

My favourite track is the most melodic one, somewhat reminding me of ''Kansas'' to some extent. ''Communion.'' wonderfully combines some symphonic elements with metal sounds. A whole shebang of bombastic feel which works pretty well actually.

After a good and speedy ''The Bird.'', I quite dislike such attempts as ''On The Breath Of Poseidon'' with lots of orchestration to start and little savour to follow. It sounds as a soundtrack and could have been used in a new version of ''Laurence Of Arabia''. The same can be experienced with ''The Death of Balance'' (with a harder accent during the second part).

I guess that it is useless to tell you that ''Egypt'' holds some Middle-Eastern influences. The vocals are of the finest from this album but the global feel is just good (thanks to the mix of these metal lines and Oriental feel actually).

I am not sure that the genuine prog fan would be overwhelmed with the music he will discover with this recording. Some good tracks like ''Absence Of Light'' appeals to my taste because I am a quite heavy or hard-rock oriented old freak at times. But this is not the majority of the PA members I guess.

''Ayreon'' and ''Dream Theater'' fans should be thrilled. But I only moderately appreciate these bands. Having said this, this album is of course not a bad one. I rate it as a three star one, which means that you could easily add up one star if metal is one of your praised musical genre: virtuosity at times, raging beats, some attempts to sound like Purple during some short instrumental part (''A Fool's Paradise'') are quite alright.

Like the band said on stage while they were performing their set as opening act for ''Dream Theater'' during their European tour (at least at Antwerp where I witnessed this): ''you're gonna to have a great heavy metal night''. They didn't mention: ''you're gonna get a fine prog metal evening''. Did you get the message?

Three stars for this good album.

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Posted Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Review by Conor Fynes
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars 'V: The New Mythology Suite' - Symphony X (8.5/10)

Symphony X has been cited alot as being the counterpart of Dream Theater in the progressive metal world. The two are constantly being compared to each other, and while I prefer Dream Theater hands down overall, Symphony X have made themselves a conceptual masterpiece that matches any album by Petrucci and company. This is music that paints a very exotic locale, and has a very classical Greek/Egyptian feel to it, as if it's the soundtrack to a badass, metal version of 'Jason & The Argonauts.' While there's a point where the cheesy power metal approach the band takes in their music can become a bit too much, there's just enough progressive magic here to balance it out and make for a hell of a wild ride.

Judging from 'The New Mythology Suite's name, it's understandable to think of the album has not a mere collection of songs, but a multi-part epic, much along the lines of Fates Warning's 'The Ivory Gate Of Dreams' or The Mars Volta's 'Cassandra Geminni,' spanning the course of many tracks.

Despite the instrumental brilliance that the band adopts, I have never been a fan of Russell Allen's voice, and most likely never will. He's obviously a very technically accomplished vocalist, and is able to hit an impressive range, but the tone of his voice simply contrasts with my personal tastes. While his vocals detract a little from my overall enjoyment of the work, it's still an album that is excellent and enjoyable throughout.

The highlights are always the parts where the band opts to go very progressive and technical. The instrumental parts (for reason mentioned above) are my favourite. Stand-out songs include the epic 'Communion And The Oracle,' the exotic sounding 'Egypt,' the highly progressive and abstract- rhythmic 'Death Of Balance/Lacrymosa' and the fantastic, grandiose closer 'Rediscovery Pt. II.' This is a very neoclassically-arranged piece of progressive metal. I'm sure every prog-metal fan can enjoy the greatness of this album. It's not the superior masterpiece of progressive metal, but it's definately up there, and stands as being Symphony X's most impressive work to date.

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Posted Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Review by crimson87
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Lately I have been getting more into prog metal territory , mainly thanks to buying records that suit my tastes. V:The new mythology suite is one of them to describe this record in a single sentence I would say that while it's progressive it has much aspects in common with Power Metal specially the drums and fast guitars. Like many users said before , the record has a symphonic feel all around: Featuring incredible vocal harmonies and catchy chouruses , some cheese as well but this is prog metal and you always have some of it. Lyrically the album is a mixture of tales from ancent civilizations like Egypt and Atlantis , they are not outstanding but feet well with the epic sounding of the band.

Opening with a brief symphonic intro that suddenly develops into a power metal song serving as a prelude for "Evolution" the first real tune. This is power metal with prog learnings , great riffs and powerful vocals by Russell Allen make this song on of the highlights of V. Fallen continues in the same way but this time with more interplay between guitars & keys. While I don't find Michael Pinella to be one of the best keyboardists ever , he has a signature sound that I really appreciate in this album. His pipe organ-like keys add some pomp to the band's output. All around the album , there are brief symphonic like tunes that will connect the main songs , Trascendence is one of them , servin as a prelude to Communion and the Oracle. The song is a tad longer that previous two and also more progressive featuring a different vocal approach by Rusell Allen. This guy can really sing! One aspect of the band that I recognise is the fact that they always keep balance and every musician has his chance to shine without compromising the structure of the album. This song is the proof.

After a calm tune we have the heaviest number of the album "The bird serpent war". Anothe typical Power Metal number , while not a band song it isn't as strong as the previous ones. "On the breath of Poseidon" is the only insrumental number here if we exclude all those brief preludes. The song could fit very well on a fantasy movie since it's mood it's quite grandiose. Egypt reminds me of Iron Maiden circa Powerslave , the singer delivers a solid performance , as well as Pinella giving a mystical ambience with his keyboards. Death of balance/Lacrymosa , is the most symphonic and least metal moment of the record. It's not bad or out of context on the record , ever if it includes some cliches here and there. The next number reminds us all that this is a prog metal record , Absence of Light kicks in with a powerful riff by Michael Romeo. But there is nothing progressive on this song besides some Queen like vocal harmonies. This one and the upcoming number are a fast and furious combo before the epic finale. "Rediscovery" is the longest composition of the album clocking at 13:30 minutes , the intro is outstanding and its a pity they didn't develop it further.As every epic the song is varied but it's main feature are the vocals. Rusell Allen does a superb job here singing with passion note that around the 5 minute mark the song gets really emotive thanks to his voice.On the other hand , I didn't mension drummer Jason Rullo up to now , but his work here deserves it. Speciallly on the softer sections.

While not perfect , I think V it's a right place for those who want to start with this genre or move past the DreamTheater barrier. If you fancy Power Metal , this is the one for you to hear.

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Posted Saturday, May 23, 2009

Review by SouthSideoftheSky
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Symphonic Team
4 stars Rediscovery, Pt 2: The New Yngwie J. Malmsteen!

I am often surprised to see that many people rate this album as highly as, if not higher than, the brilliant The Divine Wings Of Tragedy. I find the present album a bit less memorable, a bit less original and less diverse compared to that earlier album. There is no doubt that this is another very good Symphony X album, but it does not blow me away like The Divine Wings Of Tragedy did. I used to rate this album with three stars only, but after further listens over a longer period of time I have decided to raise my rating to four stars.

Every track here is enjoyable for sure, but apart from the short Classical interludes, the songs have basically the same sound throughout. And with a running time of over an hour it is a lot to digest. The Divine Wings Of Tragedy too runs for over an hour but I never got that feeling while listening to that album at least partly because that album is more varied but also because I simply find the material on that album stronger.

Though it is beyond doubt that Symphony X is heavily inspired by Yngwie Malmsteen, while listening to this album I sometimes get the feeling that I'm listening to Yngwie Malmsteen's Rising Force. Not only is the guitar playing of Michael Romeo similar to that of Malmsteen, but some of the keyboard solos of Michael Pinnella are similar to those of Jens Johansson of Malmsteen's band. This is not a major problem though, as Symphony X obviously takes it a bit further.

My biggest problem with this album is that there are no real ballads or even semi-ballads on V and neither is there anything to correspond to the 20 minute plus title track on The Divine Wings Of Tragedy. The closing title track runs for 12 minutes, but despite its tasteful use of piano it is not as diverse and memorable as The Divine Wings Of Tragedy title track.

Overall, I find this album less interesting compared to The Divine Wings Of Tragedy, but still a very good one. Highly recommended!

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Posted Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Review by Marty McFly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover and E&O Teams
5 stars Mythology = fantasy in my mind. These words are somehow connected. But I'm aware that fantasy lyrics in prog metal are somehow cliché. It's funny how for example jazz + fantasy doesn't exist. Or fantasy post-rock. But these prejudices are not my own. Basis of this album is melodic (and yes, I like melodic music, when it's peppered with quality (which is term that means a lot of thing, not just one, universal Quality) and also yes, I like melodic things over dissonant in general. Why ? That question isn't meant seriously. It should be clear why I choose something pleasant over unpleasant. Why to torment with cruel, depth of soul attacking sound, when I can have this. To put it in other words, choice is between dissonant quality and melodic quality. Now it seems more clear I hope.

But I also worship idea that every genre should be approached differently. For example Egypt sounds egypticaly. Well, first I heard Egypt theme in Nightwish music (Tutanhamon? I suppose) and know that it's not so easy to bring certain feeling to music. The one you want. And not only this one, seems like tracks here in general are part of one concept. I like concept albums, because feelings about music are raised even more by A Tale. And these gothical (are they?) sounding organs in Lacrymosa , yes, for some this may sounds like usual pattern of prog metal and maybe in some parts it is. But this is it. It sounds good and lack any mistake. Maybe one melody is repeated used in various styles through few tracks, just a little.

But 5(-) for mythology (secretly fantasy)

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Posted Friday, September 18, 2009

Review by jampa17
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Impressive album... surely proves why theyr'e the best symphonic metal band out there right now... this album is more accurate to non-so-metal prog fans, so this is where you can start your journey of this great musicians...

First, this guys really know how to structure their journeys... I mean they have a good balance between symphonic elements and metal, trying not to impress with their skills but trying to be dramatic, and make the instruments and the whole essamble takes you to particular emotions or sensations... this album has every trick on it and everything seems to fit excelent with the subject... Mythology is something fascinating and there are thousands of cliché albums and songs that are pretentous and miss the complete point to re-create some fantastic stories... Symphony X do not mess around here, you can see they spend time analysing their songs and give them more sense and feeling...

If you like a well thought album, with great vocals, melodic and still technically strong, this is your album... If you are not into prog metal or metal at all, this album is also for you... the strong passages are used only on the right dossis just to make a point, to for showing off or trying to seem too metallish...

This is an album to dive in with eyes closed and for sure you will enjoy the complete journey... I did it and I really recomend it almost to everybody, not just metal fans... 4 stars... easily...

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Send comments to jampa17 (BETA) | Report this review (#248481) | Review Permalink
Posted Friday, November 06, 2009

Review by Bonnek
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Metal Team
2 stars I tend to be quite receptive to many music genres. Actually, I don't care at all what 'genre' a band is tagged with, as long as the music has something valuable to offer I'll be very pleased. However, from experience I've learned that there are a few types of music that I better avoid for medical reasons: rap, Eurovision song contest music, the soul of MTV, disco and power metal. Why? They all give me acute nausea.

The reason that most of that kind of music annoys me so much is the total lack of personality and creativity. I find it formulaic, cliché, cheesy and generic. It is made to cater for a distinct target audience; it has to conform to specific rules, dos and donts; it always repeats the same trick; it's commercially manufactured music and it's the death to any possible listening enjoyment on my part.

Well of course I'm generalizing and I'm sure I rambled on about this before, so before I start being repetitive too, let me conclude that this is probably a good album in the genre. So don't be afraid, I don't want to be a spoilsport, nor do I want to poke my nose into others people's audile pleasures (what an image) No I won't go in and rate every album in this style on PA with one star, even though it sounds very tempting :)

No, if I want to hear this type of music I'll stick to my Rainbow and a few Dio tracks. That's all I wanted to say.

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Send comments to Bonnek (BETA) | Report this review (#252050) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, November 21, 2009

Review by Rune2000
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Prog Metal Team
4 stars The artwork for this album bears an uncanny resemblance to Spock's Beard's V and just as it been mentioned by Easy Livin and sinkadotentree both albums were released in 2000 and marked the fifth studio album for each of the two bands!

For some strange reason I never listened to Twilight in Olympus. One possible explanation could be that I haven't seen it on the shelves of the record stores and since my Internet opportunities were limited at the time I had to rely entirely on the very limited word of mouth. Of course once I saw V: The New Mythology Suite I bought it without a single hesitation.

I didn't expect that Symphony X would ever surpass Divine Wings Of Tragedy but what I heard here was definitely a much more mature band. The neo-classical elements really shine and in result make the band sound more creative than ever! There are still definite nods at the power metal but they outdo themselves even in that category since Evolution (The Grand Design) is probably the best power composition that the band has so far managed to record.

With the release of V: The New Mythology Suite the band skipped the idea of composing one long concept track and instead went for an even more ambitious approach of recording an entire conceptual record! The result is basically everything one can expect from a concept metal album at its best. The flow of the album is smooth and every composition has some new light to shed on the overall story. Among these conceptual composition lies Communion And The Oracle which is probably the best progressive metal composition penned by Romeo and Pinnella. Great melody and guitar/keyboard interplay make it the biggest highlight of the entire release.

The albums ending doesn't really give me the same satisfaction as the early compositions but it all sums up to a solid overall feel. V: The New Mythology Suite might not have clicked with me in the same way as Divine Wings Of Tragedy but that's only because my progressive metal preferences had evolved over the short course of those two years. Bands like Dream Theater, Queensrĸche and Pain of Salvation have started to compete for my attention and were releasing material that was more to my liking.

Still I think that everyone who is interested in exploring Symphony X should start with this album. An excellent addition to any progressive rock collection!

***** star songs: Evolution (The Grand Design) (5:20) Communion And The Oracle (7:45)

**** star songs: Prelude (1:07) Fallen (5:51) Transcendence (0:38) The Bird-Serpent War / Cataclysm (3:59) On The Breath Of Poseidon (3:04) Death Of Balance / Lacrymosa (3:42) Absence Of Light (4:58) A Fool's Paradise (5:48) Rediscovery (1:24) Rediscovery pt. II - The New Mythology (11:57)

*** star songs: Egypt (7:04)

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Send comments to Rune2000 (BETA) | Report this review (#263604) | Review Permalink
Posted Saturday, January 30, 2010

Review by EatThatPhonebook
PROG REVIEWER
3 stars "The New Mythology": an album where astrology, lost worlds and Egyptian mythology come together.

The most acclaimed and famous album of Symphony X is an excellent opus and another step forward for the band's style; the first three albums were always concentrated on medieval themes, and also on greek mythology. Also, the solos and the "progressiveness" were more highlighted. In "V" the production is rough, the songs sum up to thirteen, and the influences are closer to Power Metal, more than to Progressive. The guitars here have a crunchier sound, the drums have a deeper resonance, the keyboards aren't focused on soloing and virtuosity, instead they are more concentrated on the production of mythical and majestic atmospheres. A great loss that is heavily missed is the departure of bassist Thomas Miller,who is a true fiend when playing his instrument. He is replaced by Lepond, who obviously can't maintain the same levels Miller did. This album, however, is an utterly unique example in Symphony X's discography, because it has a style that belongs only to this album, since "The Odyssey" and "Paradise Lost" are more addressed towards a very heavy and powerful Progressive Metal, abandoning this way all the typical moods of "The New Mythology".

"V" is like listening to a dream; everything seems to fade in and out so quickly, especially thanks to the brief interludes, that always have a certain mystery to them. The album is said to be a concept album, since it mainly concerns about Atlantis, Egyptian mythology, and also astrology, like I said in the beginning of this review. The lyrics aren't particularly intriguing though, but not always banal, like in "Evolution", where the concept is well presented.

The songs aren't all excellent, but at least half of them are: the already mentioned "Evolution" has a great chorus, and perfectly represents the album. "Egypt" is another fantastic track,with obvious med oriental references, even musically speaking, and here too the chorus is brilliant, like no other Symphony X song. "Communion and The Oracle" has also some pretty cool moments, especially the calmer ones. I enjoyed almost all the interludes, my favorite one would be "Death Of Balance", which can be considered more as just a simple instrumental track. But boy, these moments are incredible. Although I would like to express my disappointment for the epic title track, which didn't always grab my attention, like it could have.

In conclusion, an excellent album, very unique for being a Symphony X album. Excellent, but not a masterpiece.

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Send comments to EatThatPhonebook (BETA) | Report this review (#333752) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, November 25, 2010

Review by Nightfly
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Rock Progressivo Italiano Team
4 stars It's easy to understand why some long term Symphony X fans have a preference for the older albums. The direction the band have taken on their last two albums Paradise Lost and Iconoclast - Iconoclast in particular, have seen the band moving into less prog territory in favour of a more direct metal approach. Sure there are still prog elements in their sound today but nowhere near as much as on earlier releases of which V: The new Mythology Suite is the pick of the bunch as my favourite. Before continuing though I must state that I'm of the opinion that despite the excellence of this album I do prefer the more streamlined and heavier Symphony X of the last two releases.

Released in 2000 V as has already been said was much more of a prog affair than the band of today. Musically it has a more symphonic approach, the band making more use of the classical influences they are known for. While the music is probably no more complex for the band to play than the newer stuff it does have more twists and turns and dynamics with greater use of light and shade moments. The guitar riffs are very heavy as you would expect but less so than now, though this can probably be put down to the production techniques the band employ these days. Musically it's very inventive with many captivating moments. Strong melodies are not in short supply and Russell Allen was a great vocalist ten years ago, as he is now though with a slightly smoother delivery. It's also worth mentioning Michael Pinnella's keyboards find more space to shine than they do now, taking less of a supporting role.

Being a concept album V is of course best digested as a whole and rather than picking out individual tracks for praise I'll say that as a complete piece it works magnificently. The instrumental parts are more often than not captivating and with a vocalist of Allen's capabilities the vocal parts are no less so and there's also the usual choral sections which when used in moderation like here add another interesting dimension.

It's pleasing to see that as good as this album is the band have grown over recent years and not been content to rest on their laurels. Nevertheless V remains a fitting testimony to the more symphonic prog metal approach of the bands earlier years and as such is an essential purchase for anyone investigating the bands past despite not quite reaching masterpiece status.

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Send comments to Nightfly (BETA) | Report this review (#478122) | Review Permalink
Posted Thursday, July 07, 2011

Review by Warthur
PROG REVIEWER
4 stars Whilst many cite The Divine Wings of Tragedy as the album where it all came together for Symphony X, personally I consider V to be their first really great album. Where I think the band really excel here, to an extent that they didn't on Divine Wings, is that they manage to seamlessly blend the conventions of classic power metal and progressive metal, delivering the best of both worlds whilst deftly evading the weaknesses of the two styles.

For instance, from progressive metal they draw the high level of technical complexity and the prog rock song structures whilst avoiding the pitfall of putting technicality and instrumental wanking above atmosphere, emotion, and tight song structures. For those three factors, they look to power metal, with its soaring emotional highs and epic atmosphere (perfect for the album's Atlantis mythology), but at the same time unlike many power metal bands (and prog metal bands who draw on power metal) they never cross the line from entertainingly over-the- top to embarrassingly cheesy on here, which I felt they did a little too often on Divine Wings.

In short, this album offers the listener all of the cream and none of the crud of the two genres most closely associated with Symphony X, and on the whole puts the band in the front rank of progressive metal.

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Send comments to Warthur (BETA) | Report this review (#641899) | Review Permalink
Posted Sunday, February 26, 2012

Review by Menswear
PROG REVIEWER
5 stars What if Dream Theater never existed?

These guys would probably be Prog Royalty. Although Dream Theater's technique is phenomenal, Symphony X is a well kept secret weapon for someone who wants a musical challenge. I can say it's been a while since I gave them a try, and their latest left me somewhat cold due to an overdose of aggressivity.

Luckily for me this album has more nuances and the rendition of the story is interesting, and might I add, very interesting. Musically the band is border insane: Romero is an absolutely gorgeous (not physically) guitar player. He shreds old school a la Malmsteen, sporting also the look of the Sweden Strato God. Pinella on keys is becoming one of my favorites fast and Allen is extraordinary as the front man; Allen becoming a safe value in Ayreon albums, I am impressed by his personnal style (even the backing vocals are great), not rending another Labrie imitation.

Let's not forget the visual side of the band! I'm not talking about their ugly mugs but of the artwork. I admit, was the first thing that attracted to me. I think the cover is easily one of the most memorable of the metal world, making the whole package even more attractive. My only (and minor) critic would be that band is not really visiting other roads than the Power Metal; t's a well oiled machine, but only giving us a full serving of neo-classical Crunch.

All in all a dead serious album, not giving you a moment to breathe and full of cinematic imagerie.

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Send comments to Menswear (BETA) | Report this review (#1076339) | Review Permalink
Posted Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Latest members reviews

3 stars Metal is not my cup of tea. Darth Vader from Planet Vulcan melting my brain is just not my idea of musical enjoyment. Granted, I can appreciate the exceptional technical skill of these guys--especially the keyboard and lead guitar player--and I understand the lyrical effort going into the concep ... (read more)

Report this review (#613993) | Posted by BrufordFreak | Friday, January 20, 2012 | Review Permanlink

4 stars i cannot believe this album took only the usual 2 years for Symphony X! it has everything that a true progressive metal classic should have: - 60+ minutes playing time - multiple "epic" songs - Communion and the Oracle, Egypt, Rediscovery... - segues, intros, instrumental interludes et al - ... (read more)

Report this review (#463314) | Posted by sv_godspeed | Friday, June 17, 2011 | Review Permanlink

5 stars This album, for me, is an absolute masterpiece. It's hard to "get into" and get it to start to grow, but once it does, you will agree with me that this album it's incredible. From the orchestrated and symphonic calmed parts to the heaviest metal riffing, I think this is a great album, full of mel ... (read more)

Report this review (#392208) | Posted by RafaelRuiz | Tuesday, February 01, 2011 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I had listened to all Symphony X albums multiple times except for V, before I got it in a fairly big haul. The album cover is brilliant, and I was excited to spin it instantly. After spinning it a few times I concluded that this was truly their best album, surpassing The Divine Wings of Tragedy. ... (read more)

Report this review (#389595) | Posted by jsem | Saturday, January 29, 2011 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Without a doubt the best album of Symphony X "V: The new suite mithology" (do not confuse with the album "V"of Spocks Beard!) is certainly an ambitious project that blends concepts of mythology, Atlantis and new age and translates into a sound that mixes power metal, opera and symphonic rock. Cer ... (read more)

Report this review (#358974) | Posted by voliveira | Monday, December 20, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars I honestly think that this album sets the diamond standard for symphonic metal. Between Michael Romeo's beautiful guitar playing, the brilliantly orchestrated symphonic sections, fantastic melodies, and sudden russian interludes we hav a real winner. I think the real magic of the album rests ... (read more)

Report this review (#345451) | Posted by Relayer Duos | Monday, December 06, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars With 'V - The New Mythology Suite' it seems Symphony X give in to the temptation that hits every Prog band at some point in their career - the concept album. Fans of the band will be familiar with their unique style of Metal which nicely blends different neoclassical, symphonic and progressive e ... (read more)

Report this review (#308214) | Posted by Valarius | Thursday, November 04, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars At a very early point of my life (I was 13 or 14), I first got my dose of prog, becoming obsessed with Dream Theater (that obsession has ended, but I still respect them madly), so it was obvious that I would sample other cheeses on the progressive metal plate. I had heard of Symphony X (i had o ... (read more)

Report this review (#287892) | Posted by arcane-beautiful | Tuesday, June 22, 2010 | Review Permanlink

4 stars opera rock experience everything here contributes to the band in question being hailed from one of the best scene progmetal. be compared with the common lionized: Dream Theater, but weigh the differences and originality in this respect. While we realize the action of virtuoso Michael Romeo sq ... (read more)

Report this review (#283923) | Posted by nandprogger | Friday, May 28, 2010 | Review Permanlink

5 stars A classical lesson in giving a second chance. I got this album after "The Odyssey" and "Paradise Lost" because I was craving to hear more about Symphony X than just the 2 albums I just mentioned. After my first listen, I was disappointed. Where are the catchy riffs? Where is all the rage an ... (read more)

Report this review (#251758) | Posted by bluegecko | Thursday, November 19, 2009 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Symphony X is one of my favorites band, so I will try to be objective in this critic. V is the album that raised their popularity in the progressive metal masses. It is an admirable lyrical album with a lot classical references. It deals with the myth of Atlantis(Russell Allen is historian, that i ... (read more)

Report this review (#221378) | Posted by mel from hell | Tuesday, June 16, 2009 | Review Permanlink

2 stars I purchased V: THE NEW MYTHOLOGY SUITE about a year ago (it is still the only Symphony X album I have bought) after hearing some other Symphony X music. I mostly bought V: A NEW MYTHOLOGY SUITE because it was the highest rated Symphony X album on Prog Archives at the time. Boy was I disappointed! ... (read more)

Report this review (#209224) | Posted by volta3 | Sunday, March 29, 2009 | Review Permanlink

5 stars One of the best progressive metal album ever: energetic, passionate and exceptionally symphonic. Michael Romeo, great guitarist, primary songs composer and orchestral scores creator, is, for me, one of the most important figures in music scene today. Russell Allen, as you know, is one of the be ... (read more)

Report this review (#207374) | Posted by prog61 | Monday, March 16, 2009 | Review Permanlink

4 stars To me, this album defines Symphony X's signature sound. The music is all pretty heavy, but nothing is so heavy or distorted that it doesn't have their stamp on it. In other words, it's Prog Metal, but it is not a clone of anything. This album is a suite of songs that really plays well when li ... (read more)

Report this review (#190478) | Posted by Single Coil | Tuesday, November 25, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Now that I'm in my own account... there is quite a bit to this review, and if you've listened to this album before, you might discover much about it you never realized before, for I've done some pretty good research, and many of the things I've discovered are quite astounding. Classical buffs and ... (read more)

Report this review (#177234) | Posted by Draith | Friday, July 18, 2008 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Woo! Symphony X's best album, in my opinion! This album is amazing! It was released in 2000, and is their fifth, as the title is V. Prelude starts off with some very operatic singing and nice orchestral backing. Nice guitar lines make this a winner. (10/10) Evolution (The Grand Design) s ... (read more)

Report this review (#175545) | Posted by Treasure | Friday, June 27, 2008 | Review Permanlink

2 stars I dont like the voice of Russell Allen and the excesiv sound of keyboards. This combination make this album to sound in my eras to cheap. It's alsow to repetitive. The good things are Michael Romeo's solo guitar who make this album to sound heavy. The best song is after my opinion Communion and ... (read more)

Report this review (#173609) | Posted by chaos8619 | Wednesday, June 11, 2008 | Review Permanlink

4 stars I was quite addicted to V for the longest time, and even now I could still probably sing this album word for word. For this reason it is extremely difficult for me to give this album less than 5 stars, but I must. There is just too much cheese now that I look back. The songwriting here is SYMPH ... (read more)

Report this review (#157207) | Posted by asimplemistake | Sunday, December 30, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars The New Mythology Suite is one of Symphony X's strongest and greatest albums. Muscially, the guitars and keyboard flow well; very little if any "organ-y" fills by Pinella (though I miss them somewhat). This concept album is thankfully complex and the story elements fit side-by-side with the mu ... (read more)

Report this review (#153064) | Posted by Blackdice | Wednesday, November 28, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars watching the progressive metal genre...v:the new mythology suite of the great band symphony x,in fact,this was the first album that i listen of this band...and guess what? i was very suprised about this one...the beginning of this album start like their band tittle say:symphony!,that was my reac ... (read more)

Report this review (#127515) | Posted by JgX 5 | Wednesday, July 04, 2007 | Review Permanlink

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