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To-Mera - Exile CD (album) cover




Progressive Metal

3.94 | 145 ratings

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Andy Webb
Special Collaborator
Retired Admin
4 stars To-Mera are no strangers in the world of progressive metal. The band's debut, Transcendental, was released in 2006 to great critical appeal for their innovative sound, impressive musical talent, and quality of sound. Led by the powerful female singer Julie Kiss, the band's style is massive and dynamic, mixing genres like jazz fusion, technical progressive metal, and death metal riffing to create an epic amalgamation of textures, emotions, and sounds. The band's second album, Delusions,, was an opus of grand proportions, bringing all of their already impressive sounds to fruition yet again. When the band was dropped by Candlelight Records, however, the band lost some of its steam and, with the release of their 2009 EP Earthbound, they dropped off the scene for a few years. In 2012, however, the band announced their return with their third studio album, Exile,.

With a definitively Egyptian overtone, likely due to Kiss' affection for Egypt, Exile is a powerhouse of explosive riffs, infectious melodies, and an overall killer musical experience. Dynamics run amuck between the crushing power of Tom MacLean's guitars, the gentler nature of Kiss' vocal lines, and the musical delicacies created by the band's progressive metal roots and their appreciation for jazz and other styles. The texture created between the sweeping riffs and the undertones of organ and piano lines are sublime, simply adding to a fantastic atmosphere that dominates the hour-long album.

In a technical aspect, the band outdoes themselves, just as I expected they would. The album is engorged with virtuoso soloing, rhythmically complex passages, and a communication between instrumentalists that is essential in order for any piece of music to succeed. The amount of emotion put into playing the delicately composed pieces, as well, equals if not exceeds the technical prowess it took to play it, which simply adds to the overall experience of the album. While an album may be musically comprehensive, any composition simply cannot be 'good' if a degree of passion is not given to the work, and passion can definitely be found among these songs.

In the end, Exile presents a truly excellent return to fashion from the band's 3-year silence. Comprehensive and epic, the album explores a large number of styles and musical paths, sating the listener's palate and leading them to beg for more. With an enriching concept about an woman who has gone insane, the album allows the listener to explore the music in a myriad of ways, and allows for a truly engrossing musical experience. After this album, I dearly hope To-Mera is back on their feet and starts producing this quality of music regularly again. 4+ stars.

Andy Webb | 4/5 |


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