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PERSEFONE

Tech/Extreme Prog Metal • Andorra


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Persefone biography
PERSEFONE were formed in the small country of Andorra in 2001 by Carlos Lozano Quintanilla (vocals,guitar),Jordi Gorgues Mateu (guitar),Toni Mestre Coy (bass) and Xavi Pérez (drums).The band added keyboard player Miguel Espinosa to the line-up in 2002.

PERSEFONE started out playing cover tunes of bands such as DARK TRANQUILITY,IN FLAMES and ARCH ENEMY,but soon that wasn't enough and the band wanted to start writing,recording and performing their own original material.While composing their first song "Niflheim (the eyes that hold the edge)",PERSEFONE had an idea of the way they wanted their band to sound:melodic,yet complex and aggressive.

PERSEFONE began recording their 6 track demo,which eventually turned into their full-length debut "Truth Inside the Shades",which was released in 2004.Xavi Pérez then quit the band and producer Aleix Dorca joined the band as their drummer.Carlos Quintanilla dropped his vocal duties and the band recruited vocalist Marc Martins Pia to be their frontman.

When the band sat down to write their new album the decided to push the envelope,and go beyond what they had done on their debut.Three of the four tracks on the new album clocked in at over 20 minutes each,and the new album would be a concept album,telling the story of Persephone,the Greek goddess that the band named themselves after.this album,"Core" was released in 2006 and the band consciously included more progressiveness in the music along with more aggressivity and symphonical melody.After the release of "Core" Alex Dorca left the band as both producer and drummer,and was replaced with new drummer Marc Mas Marti.

Similar to OPETH without being derivative or a clone,PERSEFONE'S music is highly recommended!



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Discography:
Truth Inside the Shades, studio album (2004)
Core, studio album (2006)
...

Persefone official website

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PERSEFONE Videos (YouTube and more)


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Buy PERSEFONE Music


Spiritual MigrationSpiritual Migration
1-2-3-4-GO! 2013
Audio CD$11.59
$20.36 (used)
Shin-KenShin-Ken
Import
Kolony Records 2010
Audio CD$11.21
CoreCore
Vicisolom Production 2014
Audio CD$15.60
$19.74 (used)
Truth Inside the ShadesTruth Inside the Shades
Import
Adipocere 2005
Audio CD$99.95 (used)
CoreCore
Extra tracks · Import
Tokuma 2006
Audio CD$166.85 (used)
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PERSEFONE discography


Ordered by release date | Showing ratings (top albums) | Help Progarchives.com to complete the discography and add albums

PERSEFONE top albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

3.13 | 10 ratings
Truth Inside the Shades
2004
3.89 | 29 ratings
Core
2006
4.10 | 30 ratings
Shin-Ken
2009
3.35 | 18 ratings
Spiritual Migration
2013

PERSEFONE Live Albums (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

PERSEFONE Videos (DVD, Blu-ray, VHS etc)

PERSEFONE Boxset & Compilations (CD, LP, MC, SACD, DVD-A, Digital Media Download)

PERSEFONE Official Singles, EPs, Fan Club & Promo (CD, EP/LP, MC, Digital Media Download)

PERSEFONE Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 Spiritual Migration by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.35 | 18 ratings

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Spiritual Migration
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Second Life Syndrome
Collaborator Post/Math Rock and Crossover Teams

2 stars Unadulterated chaos? Check. Tasteless screaming? Check. A million beats per second? Double check. Barely distinguishable from about 2 dozen other bands? Triple check.

This album came highly recommended from a friend of mine, so I had to give it a shot even though tech metal and I do not have a charitable past. Last year, every one was raving about Enslaved: I thought the album was juvenile. I have similar feelings for this album.

Persefone's style features double bass mania with little or no variation, djenty guitars, and really harsh vocals. This describes many, many other bands, and Persefone definitely does nothing to sound different at all. The one exception to this is the fairly good symphonic arrangements that are very strong in the overall mix, and they range from very simple to slightly complex. In other words, they can't save the album.

Not every track on this album is a thumbs-down for me. There are several instrumental songs that are generally slower, more dynamic, and melodic. In fact, there is some piano on these tracks that is quite good. "Zazen Meditation", "Consciousness 1 and 2" and also the "Outro" are all fairly good. I actually enjoyed them,as they do feature some rather interesting chord progressions and musical hooks. However, I really can't overlook the rest of the album. I mean, I'd love to discuss the seemingly profound themes, but I can't understand even one word of the lyrics. Tech metal and I are not friends, and this seals the deal. I was hoping for something along the lines of Sybreed (the one and only tech metal band that I LOVE), but all I got was a giant mess masquerading as music.

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 Spiritual Migration by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2013
3.35 | 18 ratings

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Spiritual Migration
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Hrvat

5 stars What a monster of an album. Every album this band has released I have enjoyed greatly, but Spiritual Migration is something else. This is Persefone at its best, firing on all cylinders. This is some of the most jaw dropping technical musicianship that I have heard in a long. It is unrelenting. Yet the technicality never overpowers the songs, with the music being highly melodic and memorable with many moments that will stick in your head long after the album finishes. This is very much a record where not a second or note is wasted in its 70 minutes duration. This is just another example of where prog metal is most exciting for me at the moment, in the realms of extreme metal.

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 Truth Inside the Shades by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.13 | 10 ratings

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Truth Inside the Shades
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

3 stars 'Truth Inside The Shades' - Persefone (6/10)

Before developing onward to the potent progressive death metal of their magnum opus 'Core', Andorran metal act Persefone was something fairly different. Something I have liked about this band is their ability to switch up their sound with each album, and on 'Truth Inside The Shades', their sound falls within the realm of keyboard-dense extreme gothic metal. Although the band's technical strength and flair for the dramatic is here early on, Persefone would not visibly reach their potential until a couple of years later.

The sound here is composed of blistering guitar licks rolling drumbeats, symphonic keyboards and raspy growls. The song 'The Whisper Of Men' aptly describes the direction the band takes here. Galloping riffs and heaviness abound for much of the song, but there is always room made for a few acoustic respites, in which some clean vocals take a showcase. For all intents and purposes, the sound is quite powerful, if perhaps a little unoriginal. However, while Persefone will certainly draw comparisons for the likes of a great many symphonic metal bands, their complex and energetic approach is laudable.

Where the sound of Persefone starts to grow weak is in the band's unabating focus on keyboards. Although keyboards are a staple for virtually all symphonic or progressive metal bands, the sheer amount of weight the keyboards have in the mixing here makes the music here sound somewhat cheesy, made no better by the fact that the keyboard tones are fairly weak. That being said, the musical skills of keyboardist Miguel Espinoza are not in question, but there is the sense even a minute into the second track that Persefone could have done alot better with a more guitar-centered sound.

'Truth Inside The Shades' is my least favourite of the works that Persefone has released, but that is no shame to them; they would only improve from here on, and later release 'Core', a truly excellent album of progressive death metal. For the sake of the band's debut however, 'Truth Inside The Shades' has some great moments, but the effect gets lost in the cheese.

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 Shin-Ken by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.10 | 30 ratings

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Shin-Ken
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

4 stars 'Shin-Ken' - Persefone (7/10)

The third album by the Andorran progressive metallers Persefone shows a steep development in the band's presentation. With my introduction to the band being through the band's second work 'Core', it is difficult not to compare the two, but for the first time, Persefone appears to have finally achieved a production value that properly showcases their talents as a band. Sound like a somewhat more extreme version of Symphony X or Dream Theater with 'Shin-Ken', Persefone appears to have changed up their sound to accommodate the less underground approach, and while it may lack the same strength as 'Core', Persefone has conjured another great album with 'Shin-Ken'.

An album notably themed with Far East and oriental motifs, 'Shin-Ken' adopts many traits that one would typically find in most concept albums. A running sense of musical flow, recurring musical ideas, and an epic scope of ambition fuels Persefone here. Certainly a promising set-up by any standard, but in their transition to a more typical prog metal sound, they do seem to have lost part of what I originally found so endearing in them. Instead of the melancholic riffs and dark, complex compositions that I first heard Persefone play on 'Core', things are much more typical of mainline prog metal. This will not necessarily be a bad thing for all listeners, but as someone who really enjoyed their heavier death metal sound, it would have been nice to hear a little more edge from these guys.

The more streamlined nature of 'Shin-Ken' aside, Persefone does some great things with this modified style. Finally now through some solid production standards, one can hear the band play heavily, softly and everything in between without the muffling effect the weaker production values had in the past. The heavy parts feel somewhat tame here, although Persefone is a big winner when it comes to technical moments. The band is common to kick into a burstfire keyboard solo or soulful guitar lead at the peak of their intensity on 'Shin- Ken', then lapse into a mellow section. As has been typical for these guys, Persefone writes and performs their mellow moments with great beauty. Although some of the interlude pieces here feel somewhat unnecessary to the overall flow of the record, 'Shin-Ken's strength lies in the moments where they let the melody take over.

All in all, Persefone's 'Shin-Ken' is a winner, if not the glorious masterpiece other listeners have made it out to be. New wave keyboards, guitar solos, heavy riffs and interludes aplenty give Persefone a big resonance with the Dream Theater fan inside of me, but for all of its grand improvements, I am still not certain that Persefone moved in the right direction with 'Shin-Ken'.

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 Core by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.89 | 29 ratings

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Core
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Conor Fynes
Prog Reviewer

4 stars 'Core' - Persefone (8/10)

Hailing from the tiny European nation of Andorra, this tourism hub would not be the first place someone would expect great progressive death metal to be born. Regardless, here is Persefone, an Andorran act that certain leaves no stone unturned when it comes to their musical vision and ambition. The second album of this band as well as my first introduction to the music of Persefone, 'Core' has proved to be an excellent find; a deep and complex journey of progressive extreme metal that screams 'epic' in every sense of the word. Suffice to say however, the album takes quite a few listens before one is able to truly appreciate the scope of it.

From the track listing alone, one can tell that this is not your typical death metal record. At three tracks each over twenty minutes in length, one can expect a foray into epic compositions with 'Core'. In terms of how well the band actually does this, I was pleasantly surprised. Often, I have been disappointed by bands that promise great things, and fail to deliver. While 'Core' may not have the perfection I would associate with a masterpiece, each track is wrought with incredible musical ideas. The band's sound is rooted in melodic death metal, at times sounding like a rawer version of Opeth. Throughout the course of one of these tracks, the listener is transported through a variety of different moods, each contributing to the mythical story the album seeks to tell.

Of particular surprise are the great female vocals here, which pop up several minutes into the album. Wonderfully harmonized, they provide an unexpected respite from the thrashy heaviness of the heavier segments. The death metal moments are done with almost as much success as the mellow parts however, although it does feel as if the rather lacking production of the album deters from what would otherwise have been a consistently stunning listen. Although the somewhat lo-fi studio work is typical of most underground metal and doesn't always hurt the product, the complexity of 'Core' doesn't lend well to being conveyed through anything less than clear production.

Another issue here is the fact that while Persefone makes good use of the track time for each song, each piece doesn't feel so much like a structured composition as it does a stream of great musical ideas, flowing one after the other. There are undoubtedly attempts to provide a sense of cohesion (especially in the first track, 'Sanctuary') but while all excellent pieces, they often feel scattered as compositions. The slight disorganization aside however, this does not stop 'Core' from being a consistently intriguing listen.

A fantastic piece of progressive death metal, and as much a grower as any other album you fill find in its genre; Persefone's 'Core' is an excellent concept album that begs not just a handful of listens, but a long lasting experience.

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 Shin-Ken by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.10 | 30 ratings

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Shin-Ken
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by Camel666

5 stars What these guys from Andorra have been able to accomplish on this Shin Ken is incredible. I don't think I can recall another album as violent and sometimes even brutal as this one and yet at the same time so accessible and easy to listen to.

I've read of comparisons to Opeth but in my opinion the two have not much in common. Where Opeth is slow-paced and atmospheric, with arpeggios and clean vocals to build up a sort of evil feel, Persefone is fast and brutal, with classic metal guitar and keys solos, Vocals are also very different. Persefone's are higher-pitched and sit half way between death and black metal. They actually sound a lot like Chuck Schuldiner. What they do have in common is a passion for extreme music and long tracks, as well as the incredibly high quality of their output. You can't really categorize Persefone and their musical offer. They sometimes have something from Meshuggah but are way more accessible and less djent and overall sound more classic progressive rock. This looks like the perfect mix between brutality and accessibility. Many have tried, but few managed to find the right balance. Persefone lead this list.

The biggest quality of Persefone is the aforementioned ability of sounding very heavy, both instrumentally and vocally, and yet so melodic. Death metal vocals, even some black metal passages here and there, and still after just one listen you'll find yourself humming riffs and solos. Another great quality of Shin Ken is its variety. The album is not a monolithic block of violence, you definitely won't get bored, as often happens with this kind of music. The pace varies a lot, you'll find clean vocals, symphonic breaks, acoustic parts, all perfectly written and executed.

Considering I am giving 5 stars to this, you can be sure the whole album is top notch but songs like Death before dishonour, Purity and the two masterpieces Kusanagi and Shin-Ken deserve a special mention.

If you like it heavy and are not scared of extreme vocals, go buy this album. It's amazing what incredible peaks some extreme bands are reaching nowadays. This is the future. Hop in.

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 Shin-Ken by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.10 | 30 ratings

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Shin-Ken
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Shin-Ken is the 3rd full-length studio album by Andora based progressive metal act Persefone. The album was released in July 2009 by Soundholic Records.

Dream Theater were a big influence on Persefoneīs sound on the bandīs first two albums, but while the influence from Dream Theater still pops up from time to time, I think Symphony X ( especially the keyboard work on Shin- Ken), Opeth, Edge of Sanity and this time around also the Swedish melodeath of In Flames are more obvious influences. Take a listen to a song like Purity. Thatīs like listening to the mellow acoustic part of Opeth playing over a Symphony X piano theme with Dan Swanö singing. I realize some might be thinking that Persefone is a clone band then, but donīt worry because thatīs far from the truth. The many different influences are combined into something that thankfully sounds unmistakably like Persefone. Iīll label the music eclectic progressive metal with extreme metal vocals. The vocals vary between high pitched and raw/ raspy vocals and deeper growling ones. But there are clean vocals on the album too. As mentioned above lead vocalist Marc Martins Pia has a pretty similar voice to the voice of Dan Swanö, which means that itīs warm and pleasant to listen to. The vocal melodies are actually very strong too. Compared to the mammoth 20+ minutes tracks on Core (2006), the tracks on Shin-Ken are much shorter and more compact. Some seque into each other to form longer concepts though, but none are as elaborate and epic as the tracks on Core. There are some really impressive tracks here like Kusanagi though so donīt expect this to be simple vers/ chorus structured music. The cover version of Sword of The Warrior by Cacophony that ends the album is also greatly enjoyable.

The production is the best yet on a Persefone album and the issues I had with the sound production on the first two albums are almost erased here. The keyboards are still a bit too high in the mix for my taste, but Iīm sure thatīs an aquired taste.

Shin-Ken is another great album by Persefone and the fact that the band opted to make their songs shorter and more compact compared to the songs on Core is not a bad idea at all. I find Shin-Ken recommendable for fans of harder edged progressive metal with extreme metal vocals.

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 Core by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2006
3.89 | 29 ratings

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Core
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

4 stars Core is the 2nd full-length studio album by Andora based progressive metal act Persefone. The album was released in August 2006 by Soundholic Records.

The bandīs debut album Truth Inside the Shades (2004) showed an adventurous approach to writing music, but Core takes the bandīs many great ideas even further. The 70 minute album consists of only 3 tracks that each exceed 20 minutes. All 3 tracks are very complex in structure and filled with challenging playing, tempo- and time signature changes and a generally intricate approach to songwriting. The music is still very keyboard/ synth heavy but while Dream Theater and Symphony X are still a very obvious influences, the music on Core is also influenced by both melodic black and melodic death metal. Iīm reminded of both Opeth and especially Edge of Sanity at times. The riffing is generally heavier and more raw than on most progressive metal releases but itīs the vocals that make comparisons to harder edged genres valid. The main vocal approach is raspy but there are growling and clean vocals in the music too. In addition to those vocal styles there are some female vocals in the music too that reminds me a bit of Anneke van Giersbergen ( The Gathering). The female vocals give the music a goth metal elements in addition to the many other styles represented on the album. Thereīs a nice development in the songs, and even though there are many different sections and riffs in each song, thereīs a coherence between the sections which means that nothing seem awkwardly placed. Thatīs a rare achivement in songs this long.

The production on Core is much better than the sound on Truth Inside the Shades, but there is still room for improvement in that department. I still think the keyboards a bit too high in the mix.

Core is an excellent progressive metal album, and while there are things on the album that Iīm not too fond of ( the production could have been better), itīs seldom that Iīm entertained all the way through a 70 minute long album, like itīs the case here. A 4 star rating is deserved. Core is very recommendable to fans of epic progressive metal who can tolerate extreme vocals.

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 Truth Inside the Shades by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2004
3.13 | 10 ratings

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Truth Inside the Shades
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars Truth Inside the Shades is the debut full-length studio album by Andora based progressive extreme metal act Persefone. The album was released in December 2004.

The music on the album is a combination of genres like progressive metal, melodic death metal, melodic black metal and power metal. Iīve chosen to label the music progressive extreme metal as none of the tags above really explain how the music sounds. Acts like Dream Theater, Symphony X, Opeth and Edge of Sanity are obvious references if you ask me, but Persefone are not content with sounding like a clone. They mix different ideas and styles into a sound of their own. The vocals are mostly raspy but occasional growls and clean vocal parts appear too. The keyboards/ synths are very high in the mix and the music is generally very synth heavy. Weīre treated with tempo and time signature changes, dual guitar and keyboard runs and high standard musicianship. The production is not that good though and while I find the sound tolerable, the production pose a problem for me. The sound is kind of disjointed and the different instruments sound disconnected in the soundscape.

Truth Inside the Shades is a very interesting debut album by Persefone. Especially the production pose a problem though but I still find the album recommendable for fans of the above mentioned acts. 3 stars are deserved.

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 Shin-Ken by PERSEFONE album cover Studio Album, 2009
4.10 | 30 ratings

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Shin-Ken
Persefone Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

Review by mel from hell

5 stars I discovered Persefone with this release and I felt very stupid for not having listened to this band previously. Persefone's music is a mix of death metal with heavy growls and 'ripped- off' vocals(I call the vocals that are lighter than the brutal ones and remind black metal) combined with beautiful,melodic music with touches of heaviness of course. I totally disagree that are similar to Opeth.The Swedish band delivers an atmospheric and melancholic sound full of complexity surrounded by a very dark veil. Persefone are not so dark and they create atmosphere but with a different way. So what about the music? The disc is full of Japanese-sound keyboards.I think that the concept of this album has to do with the eastern country(you can figure it out by the name of the album and by the bame of many tracks). There are many interludiums which totally fit with the album. Each interludium has to do with a specific book(book of earth, book of fire etc) and maybe it is related to an eastern philosophy. Whatever, the first track 'Rise To Fall'(I exclude the intro) is amazing.Technical and rapid,edgy riffs,a death metal element, combined with melody and progression.The keyboards enter at 0:51 and after a brutal growl crushes which is followed by the Japanese-style in the background. The clean voice that accompanies the song is actually good.The end of the song is perfect and guess,again the keybords close the track. Next song emphatically called 'Death before dishonour', initiates quite slow but then there is a rage of guitar and drum work along with angry growls and some american death metal influences after the second minute.Again,keyboards play a huge role in the music especially at 4:46 where the Asian sound appears again. The drumming is furious during the song.The guys know how to handle their instruments,that's for sure. After the interludium, comes 'The Endless Path'.The beginning shows Swedish death metal influences. After a catchy minute(from first to second minute) the dark tone returns and at 3:46 it is the time for the keyboard section accompanied with impeccable melodic guitars. The instrumental part ends at 5:35 and the song ends with heavy drumming. After the 'Wind Book', 'Purity' follows. It is an emotional,slow song that has only clean vocals.It is embellished of course with instrumental parts(mainly solos). The clean vocals are very nice in this composition. If you hear that a song is called 'Rage Stained Blade' what would you expect? Oh,yes it is till now the most intense song of the disc,with its mellower breaks. Persefone are a progressive band, not a pure death metal one. 'Kusanagi' is maybe the best song of the album. An interesting start with drumming rythm and hard riffs which suddenly retreat to the piano melody at 2:35 which is accompanied by clean vocals. Then the edgy riffs return along with modern keyboards, combination that reminds me Evergrey. It is time for brutal vocals which continue till 5:35.Then, some soft music,a harsh break,solos from both guitar and keyboards, some 'ripped-off' vocals and powerful drumming end this song. 'Shin Ken Part 1' is in the same mood as previous songs.Keyboards,hardcore(not in terms of the music genre)drums,aggressive vocals and solos.It is a nice song though. 'Shin Ken Part 2' is the mellower brother of the previous track. Slow tempo,brilliant piano work,clean vocals and exceptional melodic arrangements. 'Japanese poem' is a sentimental outro which mainly consists of piano/keyboards work. In retrospect, one of the best works for this genre in this year and nothing similar and copy- paste to things that I've heard till now. I would prefer only brutal and clean vocals and not the 'ripped-off' ones but ok. 4.5 stars, with the rounding 5 stars.

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