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Hourglass - Subconcious CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

3.58 | 31 ratings

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Mellotron Storm
Prog Reviewer
3 stars 3.5 stars.This is a Prog-Metal album that's been getting lots of airplay in my house of late. This is a blast but at almost 80 minutes it's too long and the final 30 minutes are especially difficult because the focus seems to be on the lyrics.

The opening song "The Hammer's Strike" is over 17 minutes long. It opens with a beautiful gentle guitar melody that is joined by some light drums as the sound increases. At 1 1/2 minutes in there is this monsterous riff as well as a grinding guitar melody at which point i'm saying "Incredible !" with a big smile on my face. The grinding guitar melody would fit perfectly on FATES WARNING's "Awaken The Guardian" album, it's that good ! Eventually the melody is joined by some great background synths and everything sounds so crisp and clear. Now the melody is galloping along and vocals join in, all this takes 4 minutes.The piano is a nice touch after 11 minutes. This first song is the absolute highlight of the record. Yup it's all downhill from here (haha). "Altered State" is a mid-paced tune with crisp drums, vocals, guitar, piano and background synths. The song does get heavier. "Mists Of Darkness" is a short intro to "Washed Away" featuring waves of synths only. The vocals in "Washed Away" remind me strangely of Ian Anderson until the vocals get intense 3 minutes in. The instrumental section is really good when the vocals get aggressive. Check out the awesome guitar 8 minutes in !

The vocals really shine in "Silent Suffering", there is a beautiful long guitar solo and later there is an emotional melody, as well as passionate vocals with scorching guitar. "Thread The Needle" features another grinding guitar melody to open with heavy riffs on this dark song. "Farewell" is a lighter, catchy, upbeat tune reminding me of some of ENCHANT's songs. "The Soldier" is a mellow song that gets angry. The next four songs look at the supposed death of the soldier from four different perspectives. These four and the final tune are where I feel the record loses it musically. If your into concept albums you may not feel as I do, but I think for the sake of the story the band has lost the amazing guitars and heaviness of the early part of the album. "The Unbeliever" is the exception, with the complex drumming and great guitar work, that all add to this dark, heavy song.

Overall this is highly recommended if your a Prog-Metal fan but I can't pull the trigger on 4 stars because of the length and the final 30 plus minutes which drag for me.

Mellotron Storm | 3/5 |


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