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Persefone - Truth Inside the Shades CD (album) cover




Tech/Extreme Prog Metal

3.10 | 21 ratings

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siLLy puPPy
3 stars When it comes to nations of the world that have produced some great metal bands, the tiny little nation of Andorra sandwiched between Spain and France doesn't exactly come to mind but as the odometer moved on to the 21st century, this tiny forgotten principality high up in the Pyrenees Mountains finally got a bit of attention in 2001 when one of its best musical exports hit the scene. Named after the daughter of the mythological Greek goddess Demeter, PERSEFONE expanded past its origins in this nation's capital city Andorra la Vella and took the international metal world by storm.

While this band has gone through a few lineup changes over the years, it all began with the founding members of Carlos Lozano (guitar), Jordi Gorgues (guitar), Toni Mestre (bass) and Xavi Pérez (drums) who started as a cover band and slowly gained the confidence to craft their own musical visions. The four members worked hard and long on this first album TRUTH INSIDE THE SHADES and after adding two more members, Aleix Dorca (Drums) and Marc Martins (lead vocals), found the perfect chemistry to finish off this debut album and unleash it on an unsuspecting planet. The band experienced instant feedback as the album was a surprise hit at least in terms of the metal underground which has led to a two decade career that has found many slots at various festivals across the European continent.

TRUTH INSIDE THE SHADES actually started off as a demo but after months of crafting new tunes, PERSEFONE found it had enough decent material for a bonafide official full-length release. The style of PERSEFONE is quite diverse and is usually described as a progressive death metal band but those tags only take you so far. It is indeed a progressive metal band that stitches together myriad elements including Chopin-esque piano rolls, symphonic touches, complex Opeth inspired compositional flow and a plethora of time signature deviations, tempo changes and abrupt hairpin turns from aggressive brutality to placid atmospheric contemplation. While guitar riffs rampage, symphonic prog inspired keyboard runs are just as prevalent. Neo-classical guitar shredding sits side by side with black metal screams and death metal growls.

While considered the most underdeveloped of the PERSEFONE canon, TRUTH INSIDE THE SHADES certainly debuted with a bang. While the tracks often begin with classical piano and keyboard melodies, the musical procession offers twists and turns that fuse the elements of power metal, death metal, neoclassical shredding and even elements of black metal in the vein of Cradle of Filth. There are the expected blastbeats, double bass banging and chugging riffage of metal madness but there are also clean melodic moments with clean vocals that offer a glimpse of a true progressive metal album delving into the mellower aspects of progressive rock. The tracks come off as epic with lengthy journeys of musical processions that take on disparate characteristics that at times even mimic operas especially with some of the brief choral vocal moments.

PERSEFONE would go on to craft even more adventurous albums with the following "Core" sending shockwaves into the prog metal community but for a first time effort this debut is not slouch however some of the keyboards do come off as a bit cheesy and there is something missing to the overall effect that really makes this a top notch release but after all is said and done, TRUTH INSIDE THE SHADES delivers an excellent mix of stylistic approaches coupled with outstanding instrumental interplay. The guitar playing is particularly impressive with Jordi Gorgues Mateu displaying some impressively rapid fire shots of shredding. The musical flow runs the gamut of soft and heavenly to hellish and chaotic. Andorra is one of the oldest nations in Europe having been formed in 1278 but finally in the 21st century the tiny microstate at long last had produced a musical artist that put it on the map!

3.5 but rounded down

siLLy puPPy | 3/5 |


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