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Symphony X - Live on the Edge of Forever  CD (album) cover


Symphony X


Progressive Metal

3.78 | 66 ratings

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5 stars It's a Fascinating Progressive Metal Live Album! - A True Adrenalin Exploder!

Thanks God! I'm blessed with the wide range of music taste that I can digest so that I have varied moods due to variety of music I listen to. Having enjoyed Frank Zappa's "Grand Wazoo" album with heavy influence of jazz - and now I'm enjoying the heavy part of progressive music, heavily influenced by metal music: Symphony X "Live On The Edge of Forever". What I have learned so far is this: Those who love progressive metal, usually hate "jazz" related music and vice versa. This does not apply to me. I love both kinds of music. To me these two kinds complement one another. There are times when I want to enjoy jazz-rock and there are times when I want to enjoy progressive metal.

Altogether with Dream Theater, I also love Symphony X with the kind of music similar between the two. Both bands are great! My first album of Symphony X was "The Divine Wing of Tragedy" (I reviewed at this site as well). Awesome! I then purchased "V" and "Odyssey". This double CD "Live On The Edge of Forever" features songs from previous studio albums before "Odyssey". The album was recorded throughout a period of October 2000 - June 2001 from the band concerts in Europe.

Whenever I listen to live album I always imagine myself being there in front of the stage watching the band on stage while doing active participation: headbanging and singing! The same case with this album: from the opening track "Prelude" - "Evolution" till the end of Disc Two "The Divine Wings of Tragedy" I seem like in the crowd who watched the concert. The opening track projects the high energy of the Symphony X music with a colossal symphonic style followed with heavy riff of guitar. Russel Allen - the lead vocalist - proves to be one of the best progressive metal singer with his powerful and transparent voice. Michael Romeo provides his heavy guitar riffs and attractive solos throughout the show. Michael Pinnela fills his work with symphonic keyboard sound. Jason Rullo on drums also plays dynamically. Michael Lepond on bass also plays dynamically.

All tracks presented here are truly excellent ones. Not even single track that is considered being 'so and so' or just good - they are all excellent tracks. They beauty of Symphony X music is the harmony created through a combined sounds of keyboard and guitar. The keyboard represents true "symphony" which resembles the band's name. You will find nice waves of music presenting high and low points performed tightly by the band and it sounds like a studio version as they play excellently. On top of that, the other musicians also contribute brilliantly throughout the show with powerful vocal and energetic drumming backed with tight basslines.

This CD has been with me for three years and so far I have already considered this as a four star live album. But having listened to it many times recently, I even think that this should be considered as a masterpiece of progressive metal live album. Not just the music and the band's performance that I can consider as a masterpiece but the live vibes of the show is truly superb. Listen to how the crowd yell and shout during the passage of the concert and also how they sing together when Michael Romeo provides his riffs. So powerful and so lively. As a matter of comparison, the crowd dynamic is missing when I listen to Dream Theater Live at Budokan even though I also consider it as a masterpiece as well.

I finally found that enjoying this live set is best when I play it from start to end in its entirety as the songs are arranged in such a way that make the listeners are not boring with the music produced from two CDs. There are parts with breaks that feature guitar solo or keyboard solo as well as drums. There are parts with staccato style which characterizes the progressive metal vein. There are parts which resemble just straight hard rock music. BTW, for those who also love ELP, you might find a vocal segment at Disc 1 track 8 "Candlelight Fantasia" which is similar with ELP's "The Only Way".

As a matter of preference, I love "The Divine Wings of Tragedy" album. I even put the album as the best album of the band even though most people tell me that their best mostly is "V" album. And, I'm very happy that the album title track is presented at the end of Disc Two of this live track.

I don't intend to write at track by track basis as it's gonna produce a long reading. If you happen to have this CD, just go to any track - you will see the beauty and the energy of this album. It's truly an adrenalin exploder album, I would say! If you don't have it yet and you love the heavy side of prog music - just buy this CD! You won't regret and I bet you that you would rate this album at least with a four star album. Prove it!

Life without music is a mistake. Music without progressive is a fatal tragedy!

Yours progressively, GW

Gatot | 5/5 |


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