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Haken - Aquarius CD (album) cover




Heavy Prog

4.06 | 1065 ratings

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5 stars This is the debut album of these young English progsters, and this get also my mention as album of the year 2010.

As you may have read somewhere else, there are growling parts on some tracks. Believe me, don't miss this one also if you're not attract from this kind of vocal style! It's minimal, in fact it is neither the 1% of the album.

These are without doubt very skilled and talented musicians, in my opinion they have added something new to the prog metal musical scene of the last years. Why? First of all, the sea and the aquarium concept, (discover the details on your own!) treated in a very cryptical and unconventional manner. Then, the fact of mixing joy and darkness in this particular way, a big contrast given by the diverse musical styles depicted in every song.

Compositions are very lenghty, you will listen to some really entertaining and glorious choruses all along the album, and if they may appear very similar at first listen, it will take no more than two spins to understand how, on the contrary, you will become able to distinguish every song from each other.

The music itself is prog metal at his best, with all the twist and turns of progressive music, grandiose arrangements, virtuoso guitar and keyboard solo, atmospheric passages, colorful landscapes, and a very good singer exploring different territories with his voice.

The big one here is Celestial Elixir, an epic clocking at 17 min. After a long instrumental intro, with all the band showing of, the voice kicks in, and, after a melancholic verse, we have, a powerful wall of sound and, I think, the best chorus of the album! Listen to it one time and you will never forget it! Then the instrumental part, a funny musical interlude, shifting the mood from dark to full light, with blistering soloing and then we're back to the melancholy again, closing with the reprise of a previous track!

Another great one is Sun, the ballad, where you can get how romantic these guys can be. A soft and gentle drumming, and the mood is set for all the song, the softer side of Haken is good as its heavier! .

The other tracks are good as well, we have shredding time in the fast Eternal Rain, or the joyful Streams (have you ever wondered how it feels to be a fish? :-)). But all the songs are on the same quality level. To sum up, orchestra parts, heavy riffs, great melodies, a charismatic voice. Let Haken's dark feelings and happy ones haunt you throughout the album, the mood shifting is omnipresent.

Essential, and enjoyable, don't miss this incredible masterpiece, you will not be disappointed. p.

CrazyDiamond | 5/5 |


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