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CONCEPTION

Progressive Metal • Norway


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Conception biography
A fine Norwegian act, CONCEPTION feature the impressive guitar talents of Tre Ostby and the distinct vocals of Roy S. Kahn, a vocalist extraordinaire with a classical/opera training. Over a series of musical tryouts that evolved from Death and Speed Metal to luxuriant Prog Metal, their style has attained a spaciousness that is sometimes missing from metal bands such as the heavier DREAM THEATER or KAMELOT. Powerful without being overwhelming, their music consists of twists and sweeps rather than massive barrages of sound. Since 1993, they have released four albums and then split up in '97.

Rich in moods and dynamics, their first three cd's "The Last Sunset", "Parallel Minds" and "In Your Multitude" show plenty of variety. All musicians play exceptionally well, giving each instrument equal weight across the albums (sometimes as wisps of sound and sometimes as chunkier riffs). The combination provides a wholeness that each instrument alone cannot offer but which works marvels once assembled. Their last cd, "Flow", is a bit of a let-down, however. Although it is still quite an impressive piece of Metal, its selection is rather tame and streamlined, giving the album an overall feeling of sameness.

Highly recommended for fans of melodic Metal, particularly the first three albums.

: : : Lise (HIBOU), CANADA : : :

See also:

- Ark
- Kamelot

Conception official website

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Last SunsetLast Sunset
Import
Jvc Japan 1993
Audio CD$66.76
$21.25 (used)
Parallel MindsParallel Minds
Import
Pinnacle UK 2005
Audio CD$75.18
$51.33 (used)
In Your MultitudeIn Your Multitude
Import
Jvc Japan 1995
Audio CD$124.01
$21.12 (used)
FlowFlow
Extra tracks · Import
Jvc Victor 1997
Audio CD$88.76
$38.04 (used)
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CONCEPTION discography


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

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

3.51 | 45 ratings
The Last Sunset
1991
3.31 | 48 ratings
Parallel Minds
1993
4.03 | 90 ratings
In Your Multitude
1995
3.33 | 55 ratings
Flow
1997

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

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

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

CONCEPTION Reviews


Showing last 10 reviews only
 The Last Sunset by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.51 | 45 ratings

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The Last Sunset
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by arcane-beautiful

3 stars I won't lie. I am a bit of a Kamelot fan. How could you not love them. Roy Khan is very much one of the sexiest metal singers alive (I'm relying more on the timbre of his voice, rather than actual appearance...as a gay man, he is alright looking). When I first got into the band I was shocked to know that he was not the bands original vocalist and that before he even joined the band he was in a full blooded progressive metal band from Norway called Conception. I was even more joyous to find a copy of their first album in a second hand shop. Win win nostalgic situation.

One of the most interesting parts of the bands sound is the interesting mixture of metal and now and then flamenco guitar moments which spruce up. Mostly the band do have a pretty standard prog metal meets power metal sound. Sound wise the band pretty much have it down, but because this is a first album, you can't expect perfection.

One of the biggest problems with this album would have to be the production. Everything on this album sounds very weak and very quiet. The guitar sound especially. The riffs on this album are pretty cool, but the production just makes it sound very weak. The vocals are mixed very badly too, with Khans voice being rather quiet. It really should be against the law to have as little focus put on Roy Khans voice, cause it is very unique, even if he does sound like a pre pubescent teen on this album (which he probably was at this point).

The opening track "Building A Force" is a pretty great opener with one of the best chorus on the album. Killer riffs and some nice vocals from Khan too.

"War Of Hate" is probably one of the most heavy songs on the album. Having some rather groove metal influenced riffs the band show off their heavier sound. Sadly the production doesn't bode well with the heavy sound of this track.

One of my favorite tracks on the album would have to be "Fairy's Dance." Having some folk influences, the song's lyrics also tell of a rather comical fantasy inspired tale. Some nice guitar work throughout too.

The title track is probably one of the most interesting moments on the album. Showing off the bands more gentler side, Khans vocals are pretty stellar, with him singing some of the highest notes I've ever heard him sing.

The final track "Among The Gods" is the longest composition on the album. The first half is rather interesting, with a lot of interesting tempo changes throughout. The ending is pretty much an extended instrumental section and I believe it overstays its welcome. Bit too long, but still pretty interesting.

In conclusion, for a debut this album is alright. The passion and material is pretty much there, but you can tell this is very much a band trying to find its feet. The band would go on to do better things, both as Conception and other projects which followed.

6.6/10

Genres: Progressive Metal, Power Metal, Speed Metal, Heavy Metal, Progressive Rock

Country of origin: Norway

Year of release: 1993

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 The Last Sunset by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.51 | 45 ratings

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The Last Sunset
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

3 stars This was CONCEPTION's debut album released back in 1993. It's true there's nothing new here or different that would set them apart, this is straight-up Prog-Metal. I don't have their final album "Flow" but I have the other three records. I have to thank Bonnek for allowing me to hear this one.

"Prevision" is the short intro track where we ge some atmosphere. "Building A Force" is built right away as all hell breaks loose with the drums crashing while the guitar rips it up. Vocals join in. It settles some 2 1/2 minutes in. Great sound when the riffs kick in followed by a guitar solo. "War Of Hate" sounds so good ! The vocals are reserved before a minute but the music isn't. A calm before 3 minutes with bass. Some Spanish guitar follows. "Bowed Down With Sorrow" is fairly heavy as laid back vocals join in. It picks up 1 1/2 minutes in. Nice. The contrasts continue. The guitar solo is beautiful 5 minutes in. I love the guitar intro on "Fairy's Dance" then here comes the riffs. It then settles with vocals but not for long. Themes are repeated. The guitar lights it up after 3 1/2 minutes. Nice.

"Another World" is some heavy [&*!#] as the tempo picks up and vocals join in. Some nice chunky bass too. An earth-shaking soundscape before 4 minutes as rough sounding vocals come in. A guitar solo comes in too. Amazing track ! "Elegy" features waves of synths as the guitar cries out. "The Last Sunset" is fairly dark with bass, drums and vocals. The guitar is relaxed. It's fuller after 2 minutes. Guitar solo before 3 minutes. "Live To Survive" is uptempo and crunchy. Vocals arrive quickly. This sounds really good. Guitar solo after 4 minutes. This is a real headbanger. "Among The Gods" is the almost 11 minute tour de force. A rampage of heaviness to open then strummed guitar and a calm takes over before a minute. Reserved vocals too. It kicks back in before 2 minutes then it settles with some Spanish guitar. An all out assault before 4 minutes as contrasts continue.

This album has been a pleasure as I haven't been listening to much Metal of late. The second half is quite strong but overall 3.5 stars seems just about right.

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 Flow by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.33 | 55 ratings

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Flow
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by Bonnek
Special Collaborator Prog Metal Team

2 stars Conception introduced some new aspects such as more mechanical rhythms, lots of synths and a slightly industrial feel and vocals. While they managed to do so with grace, it's an album that doesn't measure up to the preceding ones.

The album starts ok with a couple of nice tunes such as Gethsemane, Angel and Reach Out. The sound is more polished, taking away some of the edge from this band. A Virtual Lovestory and Tell Me When I'm Gone grow old pretty quickly. There's even some alternative rock influence on Flow, which start almost like the Cure's Inbetween Days.

Halfway in, the album sinks in under its lack of ideas and daring. Cry and Hold On are ballads loaded with clich sentimentalism. The two closing tracks Cardinal Sin and Would it Be the Same are also too tame and too derivative of Black Sabbath's period with Toni Martin (especially Cross Purposes). Conception never matches the power of Sabbath to make these songs really work.

With a limited number of decent tunes that work for an occasional listen, the album hardly registers above average. It might still be enjoyable for fans of the band but to anyone else I can only recommend to hunt after the debut album.

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 In Your Multitude by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1995
4.03 | 90 ratings

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In Your Multitude
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by Bonnek
Special Collaborator Prog Metal Team

3 stars My appreciation for Conception diminished with their gradual slide into more straightforward power-metal domains. After a surprising debut and disappointing second, the band again opted for classic verse-chorus/guitarsolo metal on their third album.

The choruses are obviously meant to engage every single fan into a big sing-along. I always find those anthemic metal choruses to be something of a tour the force really. You should give it a try: go banging your head, heave your right hand up in the horn sign and hold 3 beers in your left while you queue for a hotdog at the hamburger-stall. Believe me, that takes years of practice!

Right, you get the image, catchy pounding metal at hand. And Conception does the trick very skilfully, with generally strong song material. There's little variation. Just like on the previous album the greatest variance is obtained by altering the tempo between fast and mid-paced tunes. The song quality is much higher then on the previous album though. Only Carnal Comprehension and Solar Serpent legs a bit behind the other songs, or maybe it is just that I've kind of had my fill after half an hour of metal by the numbers.

For a band with such musical competence, I sure miss some audacity in the compositions, the melodies and musicianship are good but unimaginative, predictable and a bit old-school from a 2010 perspective, Conception played it too safe. In Your Multitude is a good album but will hardly impress anyone outside the fan base.

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 Parallel Minds by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1993
3.31 | 48 ratings

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Parallel Minds
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by Bonnek
Special Collaborator Prog Metal Team

2 stars Despite my built-in scepticism towards things neo-power-prog-metal, I found Conception's debut a great listen. Unfortunately, on the sophomore effort they gave up some of the elements that made them special.

The band follows the same pattern too much, all but one song are short verse - chorus rock songs with the mandatory guitar solo. It becomes too much of a formula and as it goes with formulaic albums, it only works for as long as the material is consistently good. But that is not the case here.

I first heard Conception on my weekly metal radio program back in 1993. Roll The Fire was the track the radio station choose to play and it's not a bad choice. It's very effective and gives a good impression of what this album is about. Alas, that more or less sums it up. Some songs are a bit slower, others are faster; there are a number of power ballads and one weak 9-minute epic. The best sits at the start. The opening Water Confines is a fast and powerful slab of metal similar to Dio's solo material: fast, rocking and catchy with poignant melodic vocals. In good Rainbow fashion the music has a distinct middle-eastern flavour, both in its rhythm and in the lyrical vocals and guitar solos. And I Close My Eyes and Roll The Fire are also good examples.

This album has not one surprise in store. After a debut album that did some side steps into other areas such as doom metal and even Latin music, the band decided to stick to their guns and comply with genre-expectations. While the result is competent, it's too much easy-listening really.

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 The Last Sunset by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.51 | 45 ratings

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The Last Sunset
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by Bonnek
Special Collaborator Prog Metal Team

4 stars Conception's debut sits close to power metal or whatever name you wish to give to 90's metal that is dominantly influenced by popular 80's bands such as Halloween, Dio, Ozzy and Priest. Expecting Progressive Metal might lead you in a wrong direction. This is simply competent melodic metal that stands out by the merit of their exceptional vocalist.

I don't reside too much in this style of music for finding it generally derivative and predictable, often confusing technical skill with progressiveness and an emotional standard that seems to be measured by the height of the singer's pitch. On the other hand, whatever the genre, there are always a few albums where the magic works. This particular album from Conception can sure be added to that list.

Had I known that Conception featured Kamelot's later singer Roy Khan, I would have checked them out a lot earlier as he is such a talented singer. Similar to Threshold's Damian Wilson he doesn't need to resort to overstatement; his voice has that inherent intensity and breadth that doesn't need big gestures. It is rather unique, especially in this style of metal occupied by legions of Bruce Dickinson clones.

The fact that this band originates from Norway is probably another element that speaks to me. It is a tad more gloomy then your average prog-metal outing and it is full of sullen yet refined vocal melodies. The focus is on songwriting and not on technicalities. The song material is mostly outstanding and rather diverse, avoiding bombast and empty pathos. A song like Bowed Down With Sorrow, as suggested by its title, comes close to the melodic doom metal of Solitude Aeturnus, other pieces like Live To Survive are a crunchy take on Judas Priest, the 10 minute closer, Among The Gods is the prog moment, adding nice touches of flamenco and Latin music into their metal sound. Not an obvious experiment but with a tasteful result.

This album offers nothing original or outstanding but inspiration and passion ride high throughout. A great discovery in this style. Excellent-lite.

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 Flow by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1997
3.33 | 55 ratings

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Flow
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by Ovidiu

4 stars The closing of a chapter for CONCEPTION ,the end of an era,the final representation!Well,this fourth album FLOW was one of the most delightful and pleasant prove that intelligent music can permanently change itself , without any will to step again on solid ground!Why/Because the precedent CONCEPTION album IN YOUR MULTITUDE was touching perfection and was one of the most amazing inspired mixture of power metal and some fresh progressive elements to bring in the end a very,very good album!With this new album TORE OSTBY,the leader and fantastic guitar player of the Norvegians,choosed at the time to move a little more comercial ,without any idea of launching weaker standards to the excellent quality of the music!Being a very solid line -up crew,the guys in CONCEPTION,in 1997 choosed to put in evidence,in my humble opinion,the brilliant voice of KHAN,the charismatic and marvelous vocalist of the band!He seemed at the time to be more in his element with a more melodic and comercial approach and the songs in FLOW were the perfect oportunity for him to mark seriously this album with his heavenly voice!Unfortunatelly after this album he choosed to join KAMELOT ,a very talented Amarican band where he is offering even today his loyal services! Just hear the sublime ballad HOLD ON ,and we'll realise at what level of amazing vocal technique this guy can sing!The album has a very modern touch including modern keyboard parts and some even more modern drum tempos!Unfortunatelly,CONCEPTION fans were not prepared for this change of musical direction,they were waiting for a second IN YOUR MULTITUDE and they were dissapointed because this album was a100 % different to the previous album!Some very challenging new ideas and the comercial direction -everything was too surprising for the numerous fans of the Norvegian combo!And,it seemed that this was too much for TORE which decided to push even further his componistic ambitions and to form ARK 1 year later and ,the rest is history!4 top class albums is their legacy in music,but what class for each album-each album is different,proving that album after album they were more and more mature and ambitious! 4,5 STARS for a very modern album and marvelous vocal lines especially!

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 Parallel Minds by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1993
3.31 | 48 ratings

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Parallel Minds
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer

4 stars As a huge Prog-Metal fan this was a blast to listen to. I even like it more than the follow-up "In Your Multitude", this one "rocks" harder. The great Tory Otsby is on lead guitar and wrote all the music, while the equally great Khan is on vocals and wrote all the lyrics. Cool album cover as well.

"Water Confines" opens with riffs as Otsby lets it rip. Vocals join in as the riffs continue. Great sound here. Keys before 2 1/2 minutes as it settles. The guitar starts to cry out then it kicks back in. "Roll The Fire" opens with heavy sounds as the guitar solos. Here we go as riffs come crushing in. The guitar is very JUDAS PREIST-like here. It settles as vocals arrive. Contrasts continue. Ripping guitar late. "And I Close My Eyes" kicks in quickly. Amazing sound ! Very crunchy as vocals join in. Here we go 2 minutes in. A guitar solo follows. Nice. Just a light sow really. "Silent Crying" is a ballad and while I normally don't like ballads they do an excellent job here. It does get fuller and we get a tasteful guitar solo after 2 minutes. Good tune. "Parallel Minds" is heavy with synths and guitar as vocals join in.

"Silver Shine" opens with drums building as reserved vocals and keys come in. It kicks in before 1 1/2 minutes. Nice. It then settles as contrasts continue. The guitar is crying out 3 minutes in. Great tune ! "My Decision" builds until they're kicking major ass. Love this song ! Nice bass before 3 1/2 minutes. "The Promiser" opens with some powerful guitar and then it settles some as vocals arrive. It kicks back in as the guitar grinds it out. Khan is really getting a vocal work out on this one. "Wolf's Lair" makes me say "Ooooh ya !" Check out that guitar intro as drums pound. The guitar is all over this one. "Soliloquy" is the over 8 1/2 minute closer. It's divided into three parts. It's mellow to start with vocals. Some power after 2 minutes. Khan screams then it gets heavier. Check out the bass ! It settles 6 minutes in with reserved vocals before kicking back in after 7 1/2 minutes. Incredible sound ! Haunting piano ends it.

If your into that late 80's Prog-Metal i think you'll love this one.

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 In Your Multitude by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1995
4.03 | 90 ratings

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In Your Multitude
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by b_olariu
Prog Reviewer

4 stars Conception - this norwegian band who were at their peak with this release from 1995 named In your multitude. They released just another album two years after this one and then disbanded. The two of the founding members of Conception and the main song writers Roy Khan gone to Kamelot, the guitarist Tore Ostby gone to Ark and played aswell on the solo album of DC Cooper, the Royal Hunt vocalist then. About this album In your multitude, I saw that many listners from here who reviewed and voted this album said is one of the masterpieces of prog metal, to be honest I don't see how this can be considered an essential album , realy. I mean , to me is a good album dominated by excellent voice of Roy Khan, the musicianship is ok, in places even great , but to me is not a masterpiece for sure, I know at least a dozen better bands from that year - 1995 who sounds playes and has better pieces. To me this album is a cross between polished power metal with some progressive metal leanigs, is not so complex and not so over the top as many considered to be. The riffs, the solos of Tore Ostby are good and well constructed but nothing grounbreaking, the bass is ok, the drums aswell, only the voice of Mr Khan is brilliant here, excellent vocalist. If it weren't Khan voice here, then for sure would be a usual album to my taste for sure. Anyway a pleasent album all the way with nice shifting moods from mid tempo pieces, in fact all have mid tempo, to mellower one whre Khan voice shines like Sanctuary, but aswell on the rest is brilliant. Now the m,ost progressive metal pieces from here is to meA million gods , a track whre bass and drums are in front most of the time but aswell the rest of the musicians did a great job. In the end a worthy album for sure, but nothing over the top for me, 3.5 rounded to 4, just because Khan voice is outstanding, one of the most distictive voice in prog metal for sure. A good towards great but nothing close to a masterpiece. Great cover art by the way.

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 The Last Sunset by CONCEPTION album cover Studio Album, 1991
3.51 | 45 ratings

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The Last Sunset
Conception Progressive Metal

Review by UMUR
Special Collaborator Honorary Collaborator

3 stars The Last Sunset is the debut full-length studio album by Norwegian progressive metal act Conception. Ive so far reviewed two other releases by the band and been disappointed both times. The music on both the groups second full-length studio album Parallel Minds (1993) and their fourth full-length studio album Flow (1997) are far from what I enjoy about progressive metal. Progressive metal light is probably a good description. Very melodic vocal oriented vers/ chorus styled heavy metal with progressive leanings is seldom a style that impresses me much. Im stubborn though and Ive heard many people praising Conception through the years so I guess Im not satisfied until Ive heard all four albums and made sure that this just isnt music for me ( who knows? there might be a hidden gem somewhere in their four album discography).

The music on The Last Sunset is generally song oriented heavy metal with some progressive elements. There are exceptions like the 10:39 minute long closing track Among the Gods which is a full-blown progressive metal song. All songs are of high compositional quality and the musicianship is excellent too. Roy Khan is a very skilled vocalist and he has a distinct voice which is a great quality in a genre where original sounding vocalists are a rare breed. The above mentioned Among the Gods, the fast paced Building a Force and the power ballad title track are among the standout tracks on the album.

The Last Sunset is the most enjoyable Conception album Ive listened to yet but Im still not a fan and find it hard to see what makes this band stand out from the countless other progressive metal releases Ive listened to through the years. 3 stars are deserved though. This might not suit my personal taste much but it is a quality product.

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