ARTIST:

SYMPHONY X

(UNITED STATES)
TITLE:

UNDERWORLD

(2015)
LABEL:

NUCLEAR BLAST

GENRE:

PROGRESSIVE METAL

TAGS:
Guitar-Hero, Rasping vocals, Technical
"Symphony X makes Symphony X in a good, hyper-melodic and powerful vintage, with successful choruses, but without any particular surprise or audacity."
NUNO777 (29.07.2015)  
4/5
(0) opinions from our readers (0) comment(s)

"Paradise Lost" ushered in a new era for Symphony X with a longer writing rhythm and a change of direction favouring the more metal side of the band and its taste for more modern sounds. Four years after an "Iconoclast" criticized by some for its dehumanized side - like the concept that characterizes it - and praised by others for its diversity, it is with the third part of the third triptych that Symphony X is once again making a name for itself.

It was hell that inspired the composition of Symphony X's ninth opus. More precisely, "Hell", a masterpiece of medieval literature from Dante's "Divine Comedy", and the mythology dear to Americans with the myth of Orpheus, are the two sources that fed the creation of this "Underworld", which is not a concept album for all that. According to guitarist and main composer Michael Romeo, these two stories explain and make possible the two contrasting modalities that the record develops. On the one hand, the dark metal, perfectly embodied by the power, the sharpness of Romeo's riffs and the rocky tone of Russell Allen, which we find mainly in the first part of "Underworld", and on the other hand, the more melodious and complex tracks in which the singer transmits emotions and plays on an important spectrum of nuances.

After an 'Overture' with ancient orchestrations, it is indeed a wave of metal that introduces the record, first with the very rhythmic 'Nevermore' with its unstoppable refrain and then with the dark 'Underworld' with its two successively raging and airy parts. The virtuoso Romeo takes advantage of this to place one of the many solos, alone or in a duel with Michael Pinnella's keyboards. The ideally placed mid-tempo 'Without You' is a necessary breathing space before business resumes. With its very seductive melodies and irresistible chorus, acoustic guitars and ethereal keyboards, 'Without You' already brings the melodic emotion that will be found a little further on in the album.

But for now, it's the aggressive 'Kiss Of Fire' with its rich mythological arrangements and two refrains followed by the explosive and groovy 'Charon' that takes us into the underground of progressive metal. Symphony X doesn't force its talent on the rest of the record with the long and progressive 'Hell And Back' whose final synthesizes its two parts and the expected but effective 'In My Darkest Hour' and 'Run With The Devil'. The end reserves beautiful moments of music since it is the emotion which is in the foreground. At first through the association of the lyrical guitar (which lays down a very subtle solo on an atmospheric background) and the piano which perfectly echoes the harmonies of a Russell Allen possessed on 'Swansong', then with the stirring 'Legend' with the careful introduction, transcended by ceremonial vocals. 

Symphony X has won its initial bet which was to make the spirit of the last heavy works cohesively cohabit with a digest of what the band has been able to show in its various more progressive and symphonic albums. To sum up, Symphony X makes Symphony X in a good, hyper-melodic and powerful vintage, with successful choruses, but without any particular surprise or audacity. As a consequence, it is perhaps the best gateway to discover the qualities of this important progressive metal band.


More informations on http://www.symphonyx.com/





TRACK LISTING:
01. Overture
02. Nevermore
03. Underworld
04. Without You
05. Kiss Of Fire
06. Charon
07. Hell And Back
08. In My Darkest Hour
09. Run With The Devil
10. Swansong
11. Legend

LINEUP:
Jason Rullo: Batterie
Michael Lepond: Basse
Michael Pinnella: Claviers
Michael Romeo: Guitares
Russell Allen: Chant
   
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READERS
4.4/5 (7 view(s))
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