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Ayreon - The Final Experiment CD (album) cover

THE FINAL EXPERIMENT

Ayreon

 

Progressive Metal

3.34 | 322 ratings

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ZowieZiggy
Prog Reviewer
3 stars Unlike many other bands in the prog-metal genre, "Ayreon" has definite prog flavours. And this mix sounds rather pleasant to be honest.

What is not pleasant though is this recitation style during the intro and some other parts of the work (very much like Jeff Wayne's "War Of The World" oriented) as well as the growling during "The Banishment". "Magic Ride" is also a very weak track.

If you would exclude these, "The Final Experiment" is a good album. The start of an interesting experience I would say. This one man's band provides an enjoyable music. Some "ELP" touches here and there, but more than anything a great guitar work. Arjen Lucassen (that's the name of the heart & soul from "Ayreon") has had the genious to ask bunches of guests to participate to his works. How they accepted is rather mysterious (especially for his first attempt).

Actually, the music featured here has little to do with metal IMO. True symphonic moments are plenty. Strong compositions, melodic and well constructed. Lots of short songs (even if they are re-grouped into some sorts of "Acts") to illustrate the "concept".

This middle-age futuristic (?) history is not really thrilling. This "Ayreon" minstrel being able to communicate with people from the twenty-first century is too thin to captivate me during over an hour. There will be lots of bombastic moments, great guitar soli and very good tracks overall. "Waracle" is one of my fave although not very personal. But it is difficult to pinpoint one special track from this concept album although that the closing number is brilliant. Poignant vocals and a great guitar solo. A very catchy way to finalize this work.

This album has little to do with "prog" metal. Since I'm not really a fan of this genre, I quite like this album. Not a masterpiece but a pleasant work (almost) throughout its lenght. Even transitional tracks are good ("Swan Song").If you would like to hear how "ELP" would have sounded with a guitar player, do try this one.

As would the narrator say at the end of the album : "The outcome of the Final Experiment has now been placed in your hands".

Three stars.

ZowieZiggy | 3/5 |

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